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CUBEX

High Altitude Balloon payload capable of streaming live pictures, gps coordinates, and data telemetry.

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This project was created on 03/03/2014 and last updated 13 days ago.

Description
CUBEX is a high altitude balloon payload with a camera, GPS, ISM band radio, lipo battery, solar cells, and charger/power management circuit. The payload is capable of sending downlink telemetry of its GPS coordinates as well as pictures it takes while in flight, all live. The solar charging circuit allows the payload to run for days as long as the balloon holds float. The payload made its maiden voyage at the Layerone hacker conference in Monrovia, CA on May 24th!

CUBEX is connected to any radio station (as simple as a RTL USB) listening at 434.460Mhz using only 10mW! Anyone within a hundred miles of the payload can download the images it takes during flight! Bringing nearspace to the ground!

Project Page:
http://habexproject.org/cubex/

Event Page:
http://www.layerone.org/habex-launch-returns/

HAB Tracking Site:
http://habitat.habhub.org/mobile-tracker/

Major thanks to Anthony Stirk and Phil Heron for his many contributions to this project!
Details

CUBEX is capable of the following:

- GPS flight mode acquisition 

- Position reporting using radio (70cm band) - RTTY, DominoEX, THOR

- Image capture / downlink

- Power management Unit: Solar charging / Lipo / Low voltage cutoff

Components
  • 1 × Si4464 Radio Chip TX/RX
  • 1 × Ublox Max7 GPS Module
  • 1 × Adafruit Miniature TTL Serial JPEG Camera Camera module
  • 1 × ATMega328 Microprocessors, Microcontrollers, DSPs / ARM, RISC-Based Microcontrollers
  • 1 × LTC3536 Power Management ICs / Switching Regulators and Controllers
  • 1 × LTC3105 Power Management ICs / Switching Regulators and Controllers

Project logs
  • Code and board/schematic released!

    a month ago • 0 comments

    Hey folks, several people have been asking for code and board/schematics, so I've now linked the Github where it all lives!

    https://github.com/arkorobotics/CUBEX_V1

    Huge thanks to Phil Heron, Anthony Stirk, and the many folks credited in the code for all their contributions!

  • CUBEX-1 Flight is a Success!

    2 months ago • 1 comment

    Hey folks! Finally launched CUBEX-1 on May 24th, 2014 at the Layerone Convention. The payload consisted of CUBEX-1 and a Leo Bodnar B tracker. CUBEX-1 transmitted SSDV images (JPEG) at 320x240 as well as tracking telemetry on 434.460Mhz 300baud 8n2. The B tracker was an APRS beacon. The payloads reached a maximum altitude of 33698m (110,560ft) and transmitted down 50 images during flight. After burst, the aprs tracker stopped and CUBEX-1 lost GPS, however, it continued to transmit SSDV images. As predicted, the estimated landing zone is the pacific ocean. 

    There is more info on the flight available here: http://habexproject.org/cubex/

    Images from flight:

    More Images: http://ssdv.habhub.org/CUBEX1/2014-05-24

    Flight Path:

    Screenshot of capturing data:

  • Testing Complete

    2 months ago • 0 comments

    With testing complete it's time for CUBEX to enjoy some beer.

View all 10 project logs

Build instructions

See all instructions

Discussions

Jonathan Groff wrote 15 days ago null point

Does this use the CUBESAT architecture?

Are you sure? [yes] / [no]

arko wrote 13 days ago null point

Although the shape is a cube and the boards are stackable, the design isn't based on any specific CUBESAT architecture.

Are you sure? [yes] / [no]

Michael Brand wrote 24 days ago null point

This is badass! Do you have a temperature sensor on board? Just wondering what temp it gets up there

Are you sure? [yes] / [no]

arko wrote 13 days ago null point

There isn't a dedicated temperature sensor IC, rather I used the temperature sensor built-in the Si4464.

Are you sure? [yes] / [no]

Jasmine wrote a month ago null point

Hello Arko, we're so glad you have submitted this to The Hackaday Prize. I think your project is the one that has got the closest to space so far!

We are starting community voting soon, so if you have any updates, now is the time to add them. Making it really clear in the description how the device is 'connected', and why it's a great THP entry will really help the judges.

Any questions, just holler. Good luck.

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arko wrote a month ago 1 point

Thanks!

Are you sure? [yes] / [no]

samern wrote a month ago null point

I would love to launch this on a sounding rocket and then let it transmit from the payload (a compact sailplane)....don't suppose you have a how-to somewhere?

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arko wrote a month ago null point

Just released the code/board/schematics, no how-to available yet. https://github.com/arkorobotics/CUBEX_V1

Are you sure? [yes] / [no]

jakaruni04 wrote 2 months ago null point

I will follow you to make this project it would be awesome , Tutorial please

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tsiu wrote 3 months ago null point

Hello, are you going to post some of the schematics online or is this project closed source?
Also as I see you don't really care about the weight where I have seen and read this type of stuff needs to be as light as possible for the balloon, except if you have a lot of spare gas ;)

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arko wrote a month ago null point

Schematics, board design, and code are now available at:
https://github.com/arkorobotics/CUBEX_V1

Are you sure? [yes] / [no]

Mike Szczys wrote 5 months ago null point

Hey Arko, are you using your DIY test chamber to test this out during development or was that chamber for different hardware?

Are you sure? [yes] / [no]

Mike Szczys wrote 5 months ago -1 point

It stripped out my html link :-(
http://hackaday.com/2013/11/16/nearspace-environmental-chamber/

Are you sure? [yes] / [no]

arko wrote 5 months ago null point

Yes! I will be testing it as soon as it's ready for environmental testing. Hopefully in the coming month.

Are you sure? [yes] / [no]