[aprssig] aprssig Digest, Vol 69, Issue 27

Mark Conner mconner1 at gmail.com
Mon Mar 29 09:22:10 EDT 2010

I'm pretty sure he was not using amateur radio.  The amateur radio regs in
the UK are far less permissive on the use of airborne transmitters - there's
been a lot of discussion on this over the last couple of years on the
amateur radio high-altitude ballooning (ARHAB) lists.  Most of the time they
use the equivalent of Part 15 devices.

Flights like this are less common in the UK than in the US, but he was by no
means the first in the UK.  I suspect he got a PR firm involved to get the
press coverage - the tag "Ross Parry Syndication" is on all his photos.

As others have pointed out, this has been done in the US for over twenty
years and film cameras have been in use for most of that time until the
advent of decent small digital cameras.  The CHDK 'firmware hack' for Canon
digital cameras has opened it up even more, as you can program an SD card
and make the camera take pictures at intervals without the need for
re-wiring the shutter release to a microprocessor (this is what the UK ham

73 de Mark N9XTN

> Message: 3
> Date: Sun, 28 Mar 2010 10:55:14 -0400
> From: Stan Horzepa <stanzepa at sbcglobal.net>
> Subject: [aprssig] is this guy using APRS?
> To: TAPR APRS Mailing List <aprssig at tapr.org>
> Message-ID: <4BAF6DD2.2050208 at sbcglobal.net>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1; format=flowed
> MR6RJH has gotten a lot of airplay this weekend for launching a weather
> balloon with a Canon camera, GPS, and transmitter attached. Saw two
> different stories about the spectacular photos he got at 22 miles up,
> first on the Rachel Maddow show on MSNBC Friday night, then again on the
> NBC morning news show yesterday. Neither story mentioned he was a ham
> (unless I missed it), but I suspected he was a ham since he said he used
> a transmitter with a GPS to track and recover the payload after the
> balloon burst. Finally caught his name this morning and was able to look
> him up and get his call sign.
> You can see the photos here: http://www.robertharrison.org/
> Dunno if he was using APRS to track the balloon. Anybody know for sure?
> 73,
> Stan, WA1LOU
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