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Re: [GPSL] Re: Amateur Balloonist Code of Conduct

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  • Dan Bowen
    ... We ll be using a two-way satellite modem that is confirmed to be licensed for North America and Europe, the Digi m10. HF will be deactivated over other
    Message 1 of 58 , Jun 2, 2011
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      On Jun 2, 2011, at 10:38, Dave <wa4qal@...> wrote:

       

      --- In GPSL@yahoogroups.com, Dan Bowen <dbowen1@...> wrote:
      >
      > We've done extensive research regarding the international crossings, as that is an implicit result of the transatlantic missions we're working on. The ICAO regs are extremely similar to the US ones, but also explicitly address border crossing. Here's a link http://wiki.whitestarballoon.com/doku.php?id=faa:general_info to our summary of the relevant ICAO info, with a link to the original reg PDF.
      >
      > Basically you can cross into any other country WITHOUT NOTIFYING ANYONE OR ASKING PERMISSION if you fall under the Light class of balloons. Light class is our standard US regs with the added restriction of total payload must be less than 4kg (8.8lb).

      One other consideration, besides the ATC rules, is on radio
      transmitters on board the payload. Quite a few countries
      automatically grant reciprocal operating authority now, although
      some do not. What kind of international incident would be created
      by operating a transmitter in the amateur radio band (or any other
      band for that matter) from a foreign country which does not have
      a reciprocal agreement with the US (or originating country)? And,
      even for those countries where a reciprocal agreement is in place,
      do you need to change the call sign to insert the country's prefix?

      We'll be using a two-way satellite modem that is confirmed to be licensed for North America and Europe, the Digi m10.  HF will be deactivated over other countries.


      Yeah, this may be nitpicking, at least until that State Department
      agent contacts you about a violation...

      But, it probably ought to be mentioned in a CoC.

      > White star SpeedBall flights will leave the USA as a Medium weight class with a full 12 lb load, but will ballast down below 8.8 lbs by the time another country is encountered.

      Cool. What's the ballast consist of? Water? Ethyl Alcohol? Propane? Sand? Big rocks? ;-)

      Denatured alcohol.  Extensive details and documentation are available at wiki.whitestarballoon.org


      > With that being the law, we are going to be telephoning position reports to the balloon-local controlling ATC center every 2 hours or as often as they desire. We're following the position report format and reporting frequency already provided for Heavy class balloons.

      You can almost never get into trouble by providing too much data.

      > Is this overkill? For a latex flight yes. For a floater at 80,000 ft yes. For a 3 day float at 34,000 ft I think that extensive ATC position reporting is a very good idea, as we're no longer just 'passing through' the airways, we're actually more like a blind and deaf person standing in the highway to be avoided.

      Sounds good. Will the balloon be carrying a radar retro-reflector
      so that ATC and aircraft will know where it is? How about lighting
      requirements for night flights? Will it have a strobe light visible
      for x miles?

      No radar reflector, as airliners do not have active radar for other than weather, and from talking to ATC guys the very weak reflection from the small corner cube radar reflectors is often not useful.  Traditional aircraft collision avoidance systems are based on the transponder beacon signal strength, not passive reflection.

      Has a strobe visible for the standard 5 miles, though we don't need it by not being a heavy.
         More details on this topic are documented at the first ICAO link and other areas of the white star wiki.


      For that matter, I've always been curious to see if a balloon borne
      strobe could be seen visually at night (and from how far away). For
      that matter, would there be some way of varying the strobe frequency
      to provide a very low bandwidth data channel?


      > Thanks,
      > Dan

      Dave
      WA4QAL

    • Mike Manes
      I suspect that any ADS-B transponder must be type certified by ARINC, and it must have a current green tag - a $250 annual cost for a simpler Mode C xponder.
      Message 58 of 58 , Jun 3, 2011
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        I suspect that any ADS-B transponder must be type certified by ARINC, and
        it must have a current green tag - a $250 annual cost for a simpler Mode C
        xponder. And then you's still have to deal with the 250W peak pulse power
        at 1 GHz - try keeping >that< out of your 3V logic level goodies!

        I think the smoother route would be for ARTCCs and TRACONs to selectively
        allow entry of balloon APRS data to appear on the controllers' scopes. Might
        be possible now that the FAA modernization bill has passed. But it would take
        more than a few isolated balloonatic voices crying in the wilderness to make
        it happen. But that's a whole 'nother email thread, ain't it?

        73 de Mike W5VSI

        On 6/2/2011 22:10, Dan Bowen wrote:
        >
        >
        > I REALLY wish we could get ADS-B implemented on the ground ATC centers in this
        > country, it would revolutionize balloon-ATC coordination. Has anyone here
        > flown a small ADS-B unit? We looked at the protocol and modulation and it's
        > very simple to implement, but I'm sure quite FCC illegal to make your own.
        >
        > The real benefit to ADS-B for long duration balloon flight is that any
        > airliner with a full ADS-B system onboard will get your balloon plotted as
        > traffic on their moving map in the cockpit. The receiver will directly decode
        > and display your position packet, so the pilot will no longer have to wait for
        > a warning from ATC that the balloon is out there.
        >
        > Thanks,
        > Dan
        >
        > On Jun 2, 2011, at 11:55 PM, Mike Manes wrote:
        >
        >> The last revision to FAR-101 predated the Plain English policy that came out
        >> in the late 70's. I mean, who the heck still uses a trailing wire antenna
        >> over 50 ft long, anyway? And what FAA air traffic control radars still use
        >> primary returns? Heck, Australia and a number of EU nations have dropped
        >> radar entirely in favor of ADS-B (like APRS on 1060 MHz).
        >> 73 de Mike W5VSI
        >>
        >> On 6/2/2011 21:12, Joe wrote:
        >> > I really wonder if it all was meant to be by the density calculation. ya
        >> > know? that would make it very simple? maybe,, maybe not.
        >> >
        >> > stinking government.
        >> >
        >> > cant talk English he he he
        >> >
        >> > Joe WB9SBD
        >> >
        >> > The Original Rolling Ball Clock
        >> > Idle Tyme
        >> > Idle-Tyme.com <http://Idle-Tyme.com>
        >> > http://www.idle-tyme.com <http://www.idle-tyme.com/>
        >> >
        >> > On 6/2/2011 9:49 PM, Mike Manes wrote:
        >> >> Heck, a 3000 gm latex weighs over 6 lb, and that's clearly over the
        >> >> payload weight limit. And if one were to fly a plastic to major altitudes,
        >> >> it could weigh over 100 lb in PE alone. So I figured that there had to
        >> >> be some distinction between payload and flight system, taken along the
        >> >> lines used by the aerospace community with launch vehicles.
        >> >>
        >> >> That's not the only undefined term in FAR-101, y'know, so we oughtn't
        >> >> be faulted for making a reasonable interpretation of its language.
        >> >>
        >> >> BTW, a 5 lb payload with density just shy of 3 oz/in^2 smashing thru
        >> >> the windscreen at 500 kt could just ruin one's day. A D-sized LiSO2
        >> >> cell has that kind of density off the end.
        >> >>
        >> >> 73 de Mike W5VSI
        >> >>
        >> >> On 6/2/2011 06:39, Joe wrote:
        >> >>>
        >> >>> On 6/1/2011 10:04 PM, Mike Manes wrote:
        >> >>>> Although the term "payload" isn't defined in FAR-101,
        >> >>> I wish it was,
        >> >>>> I generally consider
        >> >>>> the payload to be the part of the flight string that executes the mission,
        >> >>>> regardless of how it gets to where it must go, and the rest, e.g. balloon,
        >> >>>> parachute, cutdown system, etc., as the "flight system", which is not
        >> >>>> considered in the weight limit. Alternate flight systems might be rockets,
        >> >>>> airplanes or even kites. So in your case, I'd consider ballast as part of
        >> >>>> the flight system rather than the mass-restricted "payload"; manned gas
        >> >>>> balloonists even treat ballast the same way airplane pilots treat fuel -
        >> >>>> when you run out, the flight is all but over.
        >> >>> While us working on long duration flights that require ballast drops
        >> >>> this would be neat. But I wonder if it really fits or not? I mean I
        >> >>> really wonder what the FAA would say if heavens forbid. That a collision
        >> >>> should happen, and you were flying a 5 pound payload, and 25 pounds of
        >> >>> ballast?
        >> >>> This really seems to be a gray area for sure.
        >> >>>
        >> >>> Now of course soo very few of us are even working on projects like this.
        >> >>> I do not see the need to raise any flags asking anyone about it either.
        >> >>> But it would be nice to know also.
        >> >>>
        >> >>> Joe WB9SBD
        >> >>>> 73 de Mike W5VSI
        >> >>>>
        >> >>>>
        >> >>>> On 6/1/2011 13:50, Dan Bowen wrote:
        >> >>>>>
        >> >>>>> We've done extensive research regarding the international crossings,
        >> as that
        >> >>>>> is an implicit result of the transatlantic missions we're working on. The
        >> >>>>> ICAO
        >> >>>>> regs are extremely similar to the US ones, but also explicitly address
        >> >>>>> border
        >> >>>>> crossing. Here's a link
        >> >>>>> http://wiki.whitestarballoon.com/doku.php?id=faa:general_info to our
        >> summary
        >> >>>>> of the relevant ICAO info, with a link to the original reg PDF.
        >> >>>>>
        >> >>>>> Basically you can cross into any other country WITHOUT NOTIFYING ANYONE OR
        >> >>>>> ASKING PERMISSION if you fall under the Light class of balloons. Light
        >> class
        >> >>>>> is our standard US regs with the added restriction of total payload
        >> must be
        >> >>>>> less than 4kg (8.8lb).
        >> >>>>>
        >> >>>>> White star SpeedBall flights will leave the USA as a Medium weight class
        >> >>>>> with
        >> >>>>> a full 12 lb load, but will ballast down below 8.8 lbs by the time another
        >> >>>>> country is encountered.
        >> >>>>>
        >> >>>>> With that being the law, we are going to be telephoning position
        >> reports to
        >> >>>>> the balloon-local controlling ATC center every 2 hours or as often as they
        >> >>>>> desire. We're following the position report format and reporting frequency
        >> >>>>> already provided for Heavy class balloons.
        >> >>>>>
        >> >>>>> Is this overkill? For a latex flight yes. For a floater at 80,000 ft yes.
        >> >>>>> For
        >> >>>>> a 3 day float at 34,000 ft I think that extensive ATC position reporting
        >> >>>>> is a
        >> >>>>> very good idea, as we're no longer just 'passing through' the airways,
        >> we're
        >> >>>>> actually more like a blind and deaf person standing in the highway to be
        >> >>>>> avoided.
        >> >>>>>
        >> >>>>> Thanks,
        >> >>>>> Dan
        >> >>>>>
        >> >>>>> On Jun 1, 2011, at 15:07, Mike Manes<mrmanes@...
        >> <mailto:mrmanes%40gmail.com>
        >> >>>>> <mailto:mrmanes@... <mailto:mrmanes%40gmail.com>>> wrote:
        >> >>>>>
        >> >>>>>> Good point about having one' papers in order when crossing the border.
        >> >>>>>> Space Data's balloon-borne cell sites automatically cut down if the
        >> >>>>>> projected descent trajectory goes into XE land. And the NOAA GAINS
        >> >>>>>> long-duration balloon project also had a similar mechanism aboard re
        >> >>>>>> XE- and VE-land.
        >> >>>>>>
        >> >>>>>> Despite that, I recall observing some ARHAB trajectories that entered
        >> >>>>>> and even landed in CN. I wonder if our state dept got involved?
        >> >>>>>>
        >> >>>>>> 73 de Mike W5VSI
        >> >>>>>>
        >> >>>>>> On 6/1/2011 06:35, Dave wrote:
        >> >>>>>>> --- In<mailto:GPSL%40yahoogroups.com>GPSL@yahoogroups.com
        >> <mailto:GPSL%40yahoogroups.com>
        >> >>>>>> <mailto:GPSL@yahoogroups.com <mailto:GPSL%40yahoogroups.com>>, Mike
        >> Manes<mrmanes@...> wrote:
        >> >>>>>>>> Short of citing the Ten Commandments, one guiding principle
        >> >>>>>>>> should be "Do no harm". But that does imply that one is aware of
        >> >>>>>>>> all the risks associated with balloonacy - and it seems that may
        >> >>>>>>>> not be entirely the case for some latecomer Mythbuster wannabes.
        >> >>>>>>>> The FAA regs address most of the risks in the national airspace,
        >> >>>>>>>> and FCC regs cover those in the national radio spectrum - both are
        >> >>>>>>>> good starting points.
        >> >>>>>>> The "Do No Harm" rule sounds like a good start, although compliance
        >> >>>>>>> with the various laws, regulations, and rules should also be
        >> >>>>>>> encouraged.
        >> >>>>>>>
        >> >>>>>>> Be a little careful, though, about quoting FCC/FAA regulations,
        >> >>>>>>> since these only apply to the US (and, there's a lot more of the
        >> >>>>>>> world outside of the US). For that matter, one of the considerations
        >> >>>>>>> for US based balloonists may be that their balloons don't drift into
        >> >>>>>>> another nation's air space (or, how to comply if it does/is intended
        >> >>>>>>> to).
        >> >>>>>>>
        >> >>>>>>>> 73 de Mike W5VSI
        >> >>>>>>> Dave
        >> >>>>>>> WA4QAL
        >> >>>>>>>
        >> >>>>>>>
        >> >>>>>>>
        >> >>>>>>>
        >> >>>>>>> ------------------------------------
        >> >>>>>>>
        >> >>>>>>> Yahoo! Groups Links
        >> >>>>>>>
        >> >>>>>>>
        >> >>>>>>>
        >> >>>>>>>
        >> >>>>>> --
        >> >>>>>> Mike Manes<mailto:mrmanes%40gmail.com>mrmanes@...
        >> <mailto:mrmanes%40gmail.com>
        >> >>>>>> <mailto:mrmanes@... <mailto:mrmanes%40gmail.com>> Tel: 303-979-4899
        >> >>>>>> "Things should be made as simple as possible, but not more so."
        >> >>>>>> A. Einstein
        >> >>>>>>
        >> >>>>>
        >> >>>>>
        >> >>>
        >> >>>
        >> >>>
        >> >>> ------------------------------------
        >> >>>
        >> >>> Yahoo! Groups Links
        >> >>>
        >> >>>
        >> >>>
        >> >>>
        >> >>
        >>
        >> --
        >> Mike Manes mrmanes@... <mailto:mrmanes%40gmail.com> Tel: 303-979-4899
        >> "Things should be made as simple as possible, but not more so."
        >> A. Einstein
        >>
        >
        >
        >
        >

        --
        Mike Manes mrmanes@... Tel: 303-979-4899
        "Things should be made as simple as possible, but not more so."
        A. Einstein
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