The Electronics Behind Our Projects

The Electronics Behind Our Projects

We send our capsules to the edge of space in weather balloons. But how can we find out how high our balloon flew, its speed, or where it popped? The answer is simple: micro-controllers.

 

What is a micro-controller?

A micro-controller is essentially a computer stored within a small board. These boards, of course, are nowhere near as powerful as a desktop that someone keeps in their house. When it comes to storing information and gathering data in environments where being lightweight is essential, these little boards are perfect for the job.

 

June Sky’s Fleet of Micro-Contorollers and Sensors

Arduinos

Three micro-controllers- 2x Arduino Uno and 1x Arduino Nano

Three micro-controllers- 2x Arduino Uno and 1x Arduino Nano

June Sky owns three Arduinos– Two Arduino Unos and an Arduino Nano. The Unos are used in larger projects like our HAT capsules, and the Nano is used for projects where space is also a constraint, like our PLA Falcon.

 

Freakduinos

 

Our Two Freakduinos

Our Two Freakduinos

 

These two Freakduinos are the most recent additions to our fleet. They are essentially Arduinos with built in wireless transmission. We will soon be testing & incorporating these micro-controllers into our current and future projects.

 

PerfectFlite

Our StratoLogger- A chip made for Rockets

Our StratoLogger- A chip made for Rockets

 

PerfectFlite StratoLogger was one of the first micro-controller chips that we acquired. It’s designed to record and store data, and then deploy a parachute upon reaching apogee. This is a chip designed for rocketry.

 

Barometers

 

Our three barometers

Our three barometers

 

June Sky owns three barometers. These are used for altitude calculation on all of our projects.

 

Xbees

 

The Two Xbees are the the smaller boards with antennas sticking out. They are resting on the development boards.

The Two Xbees are the the smaller boards with antennas sticking out. They are resting on the development boards.

 

Our two Xbees are used for data transmission. Combined with an Arduino Uno, the pair has the same function as a Freakduino. While the Xbees give us a longer range, they carry the burden of a 10% duty cycle (Meaning that they cannot be used for more than 6 minutes in an hour), which makes it less useful for projects where constant data transmission is necessary.

 

Servos

 

June Sky’s two servos

June Sky’s two servos

 

June Sky owns two servos. They plug into an Arduino or Freakduino, and work well.

 

Raspberry Pi

 

Our Two Raspberry Pi models

Our Two Raspberry Pi models

 

We carry two Raspberry Pi modules. These micro-controllers give us a much wider spectrum of opportunities, giving us the ability to use them in situations where an Arduino would not suffice. There are two models of the Raspberry Pi shown, the model A on the left and the model B on the right.

 

Arduino Shields

 

Two SD loggers and a GPS

Two SD loggers and a GPS

 

To conclude our list of sensors, June Sky carries three Arduino Shields. The two outside ones are identical- Providing the ability for us to log data to SD cards. The middle shield is a GPS. It is able to connect to satellites, giving us accurate readings of our coordinates and altitude.

 

Cheers,

Rohan Daruwala

Co-Founder and Chief of Micro-controller Technology & Communications