High Altitude Ballooning in Ukraine

 

Competitions like the Global Space Balloon Challenge remind HAB enthusiasts that it is not just a pursuit for Americans and western Europeans. It is an activity that happens all round the world. Still, I was surprised and intrigued to be contacted by a team from Ukraine recently and wanted to know more about the state of high altitude ballooning in Ukraine.  Serge Prakhov of Ukraine HAB (www.ukrhab.org and  www.fb.com/ukrhab) was kind enough to give us an insight.

Serge said, “ High Altitude Ballooning is relatively small in Ukraine. The government launches radio sondes regularly at airports. On top of that there are several HAB operators including me (Callsign : UR5FSV), another operator  (callsign UY0LL), and a school group calling themselves Nastixaerospace.

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Gas is easy to obtain in Ukraine, and for the first flight I used Hydrogen and for the second helium. Helium 40ltrs bottle cost approximately  100 $US with delivery, based on conditions that empty bottle to be returned within 2 weeks. Balloons have to be bought abroad as there is no much HAB activity yet in Ukraine.

 

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For both flights we  used trackers broadcasting in APRS and  RTTY modes with UKHAS protocol. They worked really well and we were able to recover both flights.”

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UKRHAB is planning to have 2  to 3 launches in 2016, with at least one during GSBC. For more information go to http://www.ukrhab.org or http://www.fb.com/ukrhab.

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