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You too can take pictures from space

Posts: 19,757
Registered: ‎30-07-2007

You too can take pictures from space
The homemade space camera was able to take some amazing shots of earth
Cameras attached to a helium balloon to film the earth from space has landed in a field in north-west Essex.
The homemade device was sent into the sky from Ashbourne in Derbyshire by two PHD students at Sheffield University.
Before landing in Strethall, near Saffron Walden, the cameras captured amazing footage of the planet during two hours and 50 minutes in flight.

12 minute video


In December 2010, Alex Baker and Chris Rose sent a weather balloon into near space. This film documents the process from building to ascent to recovery.
For a panorama at the top of the flight, see
- What equipment?
Here's a kit list for our build.
Compact camera pointing downwards (Sony cybershot DSC-T30) - (quality of video footage from this was ok but not spectacular - not included footage in film - would recommend using a different camera).
HD video camera pointing sideways (Creative Vado HD - worked well, memory ran out after 2hrs)
CATtrack gps tracker, from Mr Lee
Kaymont 1200g Sounding balloon,
30" parachute
Small heat pad (outdoor activity hand warmer)
- How much do you fill the balloon?
You can find data on the balloons on the Kaymont website.
- What about the parachute?
As the balloon goes up the pressure drops and the balloon expands, ultimately bursting. The parachute was attached in its center to the balloon, and at its edges to the payload, so that on its way up, the balloon pulled it tight, but once the balloon burst the parachute was free to open up.
- How do you predict where it will land?
This website uses wind data to predict where the balloon will land - for us it got within about 10 miles:!/uuid=e1a...
- What about the legal stuff?
For info on the legality of unmanned balloon flight over the UK, see the UK High Altitude Society FAQ
Posts: 27,187
Thanks: 1,837
Fixes: 158
Registered: ‎14-04-2007

Re: You too can take pictures from space

Beautiful stuff....and for £350 Smiley

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Community Veteran
Posts: 1,850
Registered: ‎11-08-2007

Re: You too can take pictures from space

clever lads and lassies in sheds still at it in england and they say science is dying on its feet.  pah, what nonsense.  mate of mine was breadboarding computers last time the wailing willies were on about that.  nowt wrong wit brains of folk, just the educational system their imprisoned into.
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,414
Thanks: 720
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Registered: ‎01-08-2007

Re: You too can take pictures from space

This fella did it in 1998! Just goes to show how far ahead the yanks are and how far behind we are thanks to our governments overly generous funding of education and science / engineering.
Good to see some people in this country are still managing to get along although admittedly I still think this country is behind the times.
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!