Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Spacebridge Delta SUCCESS!!!

Sunday June 5th we set free the fifth launch of the Spacebridge project and it worked!
We successfully launched and retrieved in the same day, for the second time ever.
This launch was slightly different from others in that we launched from a small neighborhood park in Dublin, CA and we were trying something new with the camera configuration.
We had one horizontal facing camera (as we always do) to get interesting shots that build interest and provide contextual information, and one upward facing camera to take light/exposure measurements of the journey through the atmosphere -- this was my main interest in this launch.
The up facing camera took shots every 30 seconds starting from the ground, through apogee and back down to landing. The data I was hoping to get was auto-exposure shutter-speed, iso (CHDK creates custom ISOs dynamically) and aperture. Since all digital cameras are is three color brightness averaging machines that also happen to record pixels, I wanted to see what settings it would apply to images of the sky without the majority of the atmosphere in the way (how bright is it w/o all the UV diffusion caused by the oxygen/nitrogen atmosphere).
The horizontal facing camera also took a shot every 30 seconds.
Images from the launch and both cameras from the flight are posted to my flickr account.
The images are organized based on time taken so the images alternate between horizontal and up-facing cameras. Unfortunately the time on the camera I used to take pictures of the launch from the ground was set wrong, so they don't show up until the end.

Hot on the heels of this success we plan on launching again this weekend, so stay tuned.

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