Pi To Poland

Tomorrow (Saturday 28th December) I will be joined by Anthony Stirk to launch a Raspberry Pi “floater” which is expected to fly over the continent, over Holland, Germany and Poland, and probably beyond.

The high-altitude winds this time of year are strong, and we’re expecting speeds of 200mph (320kph) or more, meaning that it won’t take long for the flight to travel across the continent. This prediction shows about 9 hours of the flight!:


As usual the Pi will transmit live images but we’ll be heavily dependent on trackers in Holland, Germany and Poland to receive them.

Just to add to the fun, the flight will carry 3 other payloads and the Pi is programmed to perform 3 “cutdowns” during the flight, so some payloads will drop from the flight before the balloon bursts.

As usual, you can follow the flight live online:

On the map, the 4 payloads will appear as CLOUDY, RAIN, SLEET and WANNAB1.


The flight is a 1600g Hwoyee with a float profile to catch the extremely fast winds to Europe. The balloon will carry a small tracker called WANNAB1 doing DominoEX. Below this will be a a Pi doing SSDV (Callsign CLOUDY). Along for the ride with CLOUDY will be SLEET and SNOW which are paper planes with trackers.

As dropping stuff from balloons with no parachute isn’t permitted over the UK we have decided that somewhere over the North Sea / Netherlands SLEET and SNOW will detach and make their own way down to earth. They may make land fall in the Netherlands. The planes are snub nose delta planes with very small trackers in the nose – see the prototype. Both are powered by AAA’s and should run for 24 hours if anyone wants to go after them.

The CLOUDY and WANNAB1 will continue onward over Germany hopefully entering a float around 36km, as they enter Poland CLOUDY will detach from the balloon and come down under a parachute. Again you’re welcome to go after it, battery life on this will be limited. The plane drop videos will be on the SD card but we don’t expect to get this back.

Finally WANNAB1 will continue onward under the balloon.

Tracking Details:

$$SLEET 434.400 RTTY 50 7N2
$$SNOW 434.410 RTTY 100 7N2
$$WANNAB1 434.420 DominoEX16
$$CLOUDY 434.200 RTTY 300 Baud SSDV

As there are so many flights on Saturday please review the info page/

We’d all appreciate it if you could organise yourselves so there are trackers on all the payloads in the air. I suspect given the wind speeds our trackers in the Netherlands and Poland are going to be key.

Batc.tv stream from the launch site here :


and Dave cam here :


Happy tracking!

Anthony & Dave

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2 Responses to “Pi To Poland”

  1. Alan McC says:

    Is Babbage going along for the ride this time or is he keeping his paws firmly on the ground & helping you out at Mission Control? I’ll be interested to find out what those payloads are =o)

    Best of luck and have a pleasant flight!
    Bon bout d’an,

  2. dave says:

    No, Babbage is staying at mission control!

    The extra payloads are paper planes.

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