Introducing Windsond

Windsond

http://kiwiembedded.com/windsond/

Developer Anders Petersson is in the final stages of bringing to market his latest project, Windsond. Windsond is  miniature radiosonde which can give you an immediate view of local weather conditions at different altitudes.

Anders said, “The focus of Windsond is on portability and low operating costs makes it perfect for air sports.

An electronic sond (“radiosonde”) connects to a small helium balloon. While it ascends through different air layers, it transmits telemetry data to a receiver on the ground. The receiver consists of an antenna, USB device and a regular Windows laptop. At a specific altitude the sond detached from the balloon and falls back to the ground where it’s easily recovered for reuse. Special algorithms lets the user direct the sond to a suitable landing site.

A major point is the extremely low balloon payload weight. At only 12 grams (0.42 oz), a mere 30 liters of helium is used. This gives a low cost for helium and balloon, and allows the use of a helium canister as small as they come — 1.5 kg.

Sond

  • Measure wind direction, wind speed and temperature
  • Hygrometer to measure air humidity and dew point (additional option)
  • Barometer to improve the altitude accuracy from 100m to 7m (additional option)
  • Simple sond activation by pulling a tag. Sounds indicate when the sond is ready for launch.
  • Sond peak altitude configurable by user, also during flight
  • Maximum altitude 5-8 km (17-26 thousand feet)
  • Radio link with programmable frequency and transmission power.
  • Specially developed error correcting code for more robust radio link.
  • No heavy metal content for small environmental impact
  • Ths sond can detach from a ground anchor by itself, for remotely initiated launch.

screenshot

Ground station

  • Review weather conditions even as the balloon ascends
  • Weather conditions are reported in graphical and text formats and exported to file in “Winds” format
  • Automatic averaging and interpolation of measurements
  • Follow the balloon live on Google Earth, right from launch to landing
  • Multiple sonds and multiple receivers are supported
  • Change settings with convenient graphical user interface
  • Keep another sond in the car to compare the positions of the balloon and the car
  • Load earlier soundings to revisit the measurements or replay the flight

Sond recovery and reuse

  • Specially developed algorithms lets the user choose landing site with better than 100m accuracy.
  • The coordinates of the actual landing site is known with 20m accuracy.
  • The sond is equipped with loudspeaker and powerful strobe light to make it easy to find. (These are activated when the receiver is close by.)
  • Battery life of 2-5 days allows recovery at a convenient time
  • Battery is rechargable with included charger

The regular price for Windsond is €795 excl VAT. There are discounts are available to some user groups. In particular, I would like to get some HAB enthusiast on-board to help me run some tests, give feedback on user interface and so on.”

For more information contact Anders Petersson at anders@kiwiembedded.com

 

BALLOON NEWS BUY WEATHER BALLOON BUY PARACHUTE  HIRE SPOT TRACKER

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