To celebrate its 20th anniversary, the Amateur Radio Experimenters Group released a high altitude balloon carrying transmitters for APRS and SSTV, and a crossband FM repeater
The balloon was launched from Mount Barker High School at 10am and quickly floated high enough to take in views of Adelaide, the Fleurieu and Yorke peninsulas, and the curve of the Earth's atmosphere giving way to the blackness of space.
It reached a height of 36 kilometres and zig-zagged across the sky, carried by stratospheric winds, before bursting somewhere above Monteith and falling to earth in a paddock south of Wynarka.
Recovery teams followed signals from an APRS beacon to find the exact landing site of the transmitter, a white object about the size of a shoebox.
Group member Mark Jessop VK5QI said his team was able to follow its descent closely enough to watch it land from a kilometre away and, after obtaining permission from the property owner, go and pick it up.
He said the flight, the 50th conducted by the radio group under the name Project Horus, was just one kind of experiment amateur radio operators were interested in.
Amateur Radio Experimenters Group - http://www.areg.org.au/