Debugging ANSRTrack – Part 3

Unexplained Rotator Movement

There is one final problem noted during the inaugural flight with the new ANSRTrack Ground Station program. At a point about 30 – 45 minutes into the flight, the ground station received an APRS beacon from the balloon, on its normal 30 second interval.

The azimuth rotor suddenly rotated about 45 degrees counterclockwise from its prior position. As I looked at the screen to determine what might have happened, we received another beacon, and the azimuth control returned to where it should have been pointing. This twice. Once at about 36 minutes into the flight, and once at about 42 minutes into the flight.

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Debugging ANSRTrack Cont’

Continued Debugging effort

The next anomoly to investigate concerned the slow climb rate observed during the ANSR-122 flight. Normally, we expect about 1200 – 1300 feet per minute climb rate, but a rate of 600 fpm was observed about a half hour into the flight.

An analysis of the telemetry data from our two beacons (KA7NSR-6 and KA7NSR-7) indicate that the climb rate did indeed fall to around 600 fpm at that time in the flight.

Climb & Descent Rate for entire flight
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Debugging ANSRTrack

Tracking down some bugs

As mentioned in my previous post, there were a few anomolies when I ran the new ANSRTrack program during a live flight.

In this post, we will track down a couple of the issues:

There was a consistent error showing up at the bottom of the screen mainwindow: Update call to move rotator() failed.
This was happening consistently enough to quickly overwrite any other valid messages that should have appeared in that space.

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ANSR-122 Dine College Flight 2019

Photos and Data

The ANSR (Arizona Near Space Research) team drove up to the Navajo Reservation to conduct a flight last week. In our previous post, we detailed some changes in the ground station operations and some of the challenges we faced. This post will show some of the pictures from our video that was live streamed during the flight.

Dine College Campus from ANSR-12
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ANSR-122 Dine College Flight 2019

Ground Station Operations

For the past 6 years, Arizona Near Space Research has been traveling up to the 4-corners area on the Navajo Reservation, to conduct a high altitude balloon launch. These operations are to support the Arizona Space Grant program, which encourages students to construct payloads which are used to make scientific investigations at the very edge of our atmosphere.

This year, in addition to flying the students payloads on our flight, we also flew a high definition video streaming payload designed and built by Eugene Swiech WB9COY. Gene had shipped his package to us just a day or two ahead of the trip up to Chinle, Az. So we didn’t have much time to play with it before the flight.

The instructions for the payload indicated that the groundstation would use a separate router for the video link. When we hooked it up this way, we had problems in that the laptop that is used to live stream the video to YouTube was not easily set up with two separate lan segments. We knew it could be done, but didn’t have time to figure it out on the day before the flight. So we improvised a bit to get it working.

Original Configuration
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