How to Talk to a 36-year-old Space Probe (ISEE-3) with GNU Radio, a USRP, and a Big Dish


As many of you have probably read, the ISEE-3 Reboot Project was able to successfully send uplink commands to the space craft. This was accomplished through a lot of team work and generous support from the community at large. Balint … Continue reading

CNSP Supporting Open Source Payload [syndicated]

2014-02-02 19.08.14

The California Near Space project, with the help of several engineers including John Malsbury, Johnathan Corgan, and Ian Kluft, is developing an open source payload design. The objective of this design is to enable new balloon developers with an end-to-end framework with the following capabilities: Global Position and Status Reporting with Iridium Communications Two-Way Communications, […] Continue reading

post | Comments Off February 4, 2014

Introducing AllAloft – The [to be] Complete Iridium-based High-Altitude Balloon System

Perhaps you’ve been reading some of my recent, and not so recent (January 2013) posts about Iridium.  Am I beginning to sound like a broken record?  Well, my excuse is that I am finally getting around to helping the California … Continue reading

Economics of Prototyping with Iridium


This post is the first in a two part series that will explain how Iridium service plans typically work. After speaking with a few individuals that plan to use Iridium for their hobbyist or professional projects, I’ve concluded that how … Continue reading

Soliciting Feedback on GNU Radio PHY/MAC Framework (Pre-Cog)

SDR Pre-Cog

A Little Background on Pre-Cog For those of you who are not familiar with the work…  I developed a GNU Radio library called pre-cog in this past Fall.  This was originally prepared for a tutorial on cognitive radio at DySPAN … Continue reading

Little Python Saves Big on Iridium SBD

Iridium Integration Challenges As mentioned in our previous posts, we are beginning to develop more sophisticated payloads. One of the features that we are adding is two-way global communications with Iridium. As payloads become more complex a number of issues pop up. First, the total labor required to design, program, and test the payloads. But […] Continue reading

post | Comments Off January 24, 2013

Our Introduction to Iridium

Mission: Global, Two-Way Comms While APRS has served as the primary tracking system on our previous missions, the idea of having two-way communications capability in all geographic areas is appealing. We have investigated satellite communications for our future missions. Starting out, we considered several services, including: OrbComm Globalstar Iridium After talking with fellow balloonists and […] Continue reading

post | Comments Off January 21, 2013

Uploading Frames to APRS with Python

Screenshot from 2013-01-04 23:19:49

An upcoming project will be using a redundant communication system that is co-located with an APRS beacon (but won’t communicate in the ham band).  In case of APRS beacon failure, we would like to upload position packets from this redundant … Continue reading

Completed California Near-Space Project Site

I’ve recently gotten involved with the California Near Space Project, a non-profit organization started by Ron Meadows and several other individuals.  They are most well known-for their highly successful trans-continental and trans-Atlantic flights with latex balloons.   Here’s a video of … Continue reading

Formless, Yet Functional

I am really just getting started on my one web site here.  I am not 100% sure about the content I will post, or what it will look like.  I figured it was probably better to start with something non-ideal … Continue reading