A postcard from the Great Plains Super launch 2014


http://www.nearspaceballooning.com/# taken by John Flaig’s payload during the GPSL

Every year HAB enthusiasts from the US gather in the great plains for a ‘super launch’.


The super launch is a chance for enthusiasts to get together to share ideas on a range of HAB topics such as hydrogen handling, radio tracking, and the latest in satellite based tracking systems. Last Thursday / Friday the event took place in Hutchinson, Kansas. Again it was well attended and included participants from

John Flaig, who attended, sent us a postcard from the great event.

“I launched a 3000 gram Hyowee this morning at 4:45am. I don’t have the right micro-sd card reader on me so I can’t check the altitude, but judging by the pics it surely exceeded 100,000 feet. The interesting thing was I tried two Spots, one facing sideways and the other in the gimbal. You can see the results here:
In the end they both would have worked alone.
The winds were insane today, luckily since I launched so early I didn’t have a problem, but you can see from the flight path how crazy it was. Everyone else was quite concerned about getting their balloons aloft. When I found the payload, it was just 1000 feet from the road, but as I approached it the winds filled the parachute and I literally had to run at full speed across the field to catch it. Everything inside got tossed as though it was a washing machine and a lot of mud covered the box and some of the cameras, but luckily no serious damage was done and all the cameras worked.
I also tried the new University of Michigan Flight Predictor. It was off by five miles, which is very good. CUSF was off by 3 miles.
I’m interested to hear how the other people did. It was amusing to observe the group as well. These guys are mostly middle-aged, extremely smart and highly skilled in radio, electronics, programming, engineering, ect. A few people there had competed in the GSBC, and I had the sense from others that there was mutual respect about the whole thing. On the whole they were very welcoming.”


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