On October 4th, 2014 we conducted a launch at the Fox50 Family Fest event at the American Tobacco Campus.
Our payload was a simple cardboard box, that allowed the kids to decorate it before launch. We had a tail (fin) on the payload as well for more decorations. The payload included:
-Mobius camera looking out the 'front' of the payload.
-808 #16-D camera out on the tail. It has a wide angle lens and was mounted on its side and tipped up 45 degrees so that it could record from the payload all the way up to the balloon. And the IR filter was removed so that it could record more things in the IR range.
-808 #16-B camera INSIDE the payload. It was looking out a window as well as looking at an old iPhone that was playing videos we made with the visitors to the booth.
-AP510 APRS tracker with high altitude mod.
-Spot tracker as a backup
The star of the flight was Space Ducky on his second flight. We sent him up to 91,000 feet.
(The Family Fest event includes racing hundreds of these rubber ducks down a man-made river.)
Views from the 'front' Mobius as well as the internal video playback camera
Most of the latex balloon did not detach/disintegrate at burst and hung around dangerously close to the parachute during descent. In the final 3700' of descent, this latex fouled the chute and the payload fell like... well... a big cardboard box -- it impacted at 30mph. All of this was caught on video from the IR-heavy fin camera.
The jet stream decided to visit us for this flight, so we had a nice LONG flight and it traveled over 100mph for much of the trip. At one point it's ground speed exceeded 131mph ! We believed that we were filling the balloon with 130 cu ft of Helium, but it appears to have been only 100 cu ft.
Given these issues, the flight prediction was amazing! Have you ever seen a prediction (yellow 100 cu ft gas) so closely match the actual flight (blue)? The two were under a mile or so of each other for the entire flight.
Paul had his waders for the swamp, but Lucas only needed some plastic bags and duct tape to complete his swamp recovery wardrobe.