IMG_6498
Sep
12
2014

Redundant Pressure Shield – cutdown

We have finished the pressure shield in its redundant configuration. It can work in a single standalone or dual redundant mode. Based on Arduino Elevens with custom shield. Uses a timer cutdown as well as air pressure measurements to shutdown the cutdown and “safe” the nichrome cutters.

Mar
12
2014

Balloon Flight Simulator on Arduino

We are still in the process of building a redundant cutdown device to meet CASA medium balloon regulations. The redundant cutdown needs to be able to respond to condition on its own without intervention from the ground, so we have developed a balloon flight simulator that runs on the Arduino along with the cutdown code. […]

Feb
23
2014

Pressure Shield Testing

To comply with CASA regulations for medium balloons we need to fly redundant cutdown systems. Our design uses Ardunino’s (Freetronics Eleven) devices as the heart of the redundant cutdown. We have opted to use a pressure sensor to let the Arduino know if its going up, floating at the same altitude or falling. Our initial […]

Apr
28
2013

Cold Soak Testing Cutdown

We now have the cutdown working at +20C, the test below shows  it can cut through the load string. We have simulated the payload with a 2kg weight. At +20C the cutdown glows red to orange and easily cuts through the load string. The arduino is programmed to provide power to the nichrome for 5 seconds then […]

Feb
06
2013

Payload Cutdown and Balloon Envelope Termination Design

As we are going to fly a medium sized balloon (as defined by CASA) we need to include 2 independent balloon envelope (read balloon popping) devices and 2 independent payload cutdown devices. We completed a design in early February . We decided on using timers on all devices and would perform cutdowns in this order […]

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