Away 32 and 33 Once more into the black.
Saturday, June 2, 2007
Away 32 at the edge of space.
The JP Aerospace team set up shop in
the Nevada desert. Two platforms, Away 32 and Away 33,
were carried aloft by
balloon. These platforms were loaded.
Each one was performing multiple tests
and accomplished multiple mission
Away 32 was the first in the air. It reached 94,000 feet
with a fast climb rate of 1,300 feet per minute. The first
objective of Away 32
was to test our new precision helium fill system. The ability to put an exact
gas into the balloon is critical to future missions. Another
objective was to give some new hardware a shakedown.
A new carbon adapter
attached the vehicle to the balloon. This unit was developed for the Tandem
Away 32 carried an upgraded spread spectrum telemetry/command system.
This basic system was first flown
on Away 29.
It was upgraded for increased range for this mission.
Away 33 was launched forty-five minutes later. Away 33
carried its cargo to 92,000 feet.
On board were 329 PongSat student
experiments ranged from sophisticated sensors and computers to plant seeds and
High winds during the launch gave us a chance to put our
balloon launch bags to the test. Both launches went off smoothly.
Away 32 and Away 33 carried “Bean Me Up” coffee by Vista Clara
Coffee. The high-flying coffee will be auctioned off on eBay
to support the
32 landed 16 miles of the launch site. Away 33 landed 10 miles
downrange Both were recovered the same day. Having
two vehicles in the air at once gave
us a chance to shakedown the recently overhauled mission control van. The
the flights really showed what a skilled, all-volunteer team can
Morning in the desert
Setting up the antenna farm
Away 32 prep.
PongSats with various
More computer controlled PongSats.
You can see the PongSats in the window.
This is my favorite image of the mission.
This is Paul showing the focus and intensity the team puts out that
makes it all happen.
Thirteen customer advertisements funded this flight to the
edge. Six onboard cameras took over 2000 pictures of their logos.
Recovery! The decks collapse on landing to absorbe the shock. Heading home.
There were six camcorders filming the launch and five on board views. Here's a few quick clips.
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page was last edited on June 9, 2007
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