Thursday, April 9, 2015

Need your help - Balloon launch April 12th

UPDATE: BALLOON SUNDAY - Launches from Hilton NY and Olean NY

An extra note today.

My friend Mike and students from Olean, NY are also looking for altitude record this morning.
My Beacon is still going up by 2:00PM (Hilton NY), perfect day for balloons.


Full story below........

Olean's "Marathon to the Sky" balloon launch is on schedule for launch tomorrow morning (Sunday 4/12).  The weather looks like it's going to cooperate.
The balloon will be flying with callsign KD2FZW-11. If you want to watch along from home, you can hit the URL below.  It will track the balloon as well as my chase car, and also has an overlay of the projected balloon path (presuming an optimistic 43,000 meter burst).

There are a few linked repeater systems out that direction, but the most convenient ones aren't linked to any Ithaca repeaters.  The IRLP node I had hoped to use appears to be down.  Sorry.

Hojo / KD2EAT.

My name is Jim, N2NXZ - located in grid fn13ch / Hilton, N.Y. This is a request to assist for tracking a high altitude balloon scheduled to launch on this Saturday April 11th. Planning for some time between 10 am and Noon (updates will be posted here). (UPDATE:4/9/15 - the weather Saturday is looking challenging. Moving this to Sunday 4/12, most likely around 1-2 pm for launch. Stay tuned!)

We plan to launch a few balloons. These are custom made Mylar type balloons designed for long duration flight. The first will be a simple 10 meter beacon of around 28.221-28.223 mhz. We are not exactly sure where the signal will settle in until it has been in the frigid atmosphere awhile.

Call sign for the beacon will be "NY2DS/BLN/1" repeated every 10 seconds.We are launching from Holley,NY.

The beacon will be operating only in sunlight, no batteries on board this payload. Since the flight could last hours/days or even weeks,battery power is impossible and heavy. We hope the QRP beacon will be heard either by direct signal or propagation. My guess is it will fly Eastbound and should be heard for 100 mile radius or more.
More balloons are going up after the beacon launch using GPS tracking.Those are APRS using the call sign KD2EAT-? I do not know what the call numbers will be yet. One may be N2NXZ-10.

Weather is a huge factor and hope I can contact some people to listen for it downwind. Should be interesting.

Thanks for your help,

Jim,N2NXZ - Hilton,NY

(Note: We will post any updated information on times and frequencies here as it becomes available)


  1. Launch went very well,one of the best to date.The large(4FT X 5FT) foil balloon slowly left the ground towards the North/East to East Towards Rochester,NY.Beacon signal strong and slowly faded to over 3 hours later.I had returned home in Hilton,NY to catch the last fading signal 28.222.70 mhz.We believe this balloon will cover many miles in days to follow.It will turn off by sundown and back on at sunrise.Hope to hear reports,so far,no reports besides our own so far.