Greetings and 73 from W3ARD

This post is a very quick placeholder in anticipation of a high-altitude balloon launch Sunday 21 October ~10:00am local time over central-Texas. The experiment (for me and my team) is to autonomously halt the ascent of the balloon between 75,000-85,000 ft and establish a loiter period of ~20 minutes before descending back down to ground (non-tethered).

During the ascent, [attempted] loiter, and descent, from ~80,000ft, the line-of-sight range for VHF and UHF frequencies would be up to a 350 mile radius.

We are going to include as part of our payload, a cross-band repeater.

VHF uplink (transmit) — 146.540 with a 67.0 pl tone to open squelch
UHF downlink (receive) – 446.00

Balloon tracking will be via APRS on 144.390 as W3ARD-11

I may beacon a few times as W3ARD-iOS to keep my family/friends in the loop as to where I am chasing the balloon.

My QRZ contact info is correct. Return to this website over Friday and Saturday for updates and more concise preflight reporting.

This is a short video from a prior flight –
This is a long explanation of the process –


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