• Kaustubh

MemberJan 1, 2012

## CE Labs Contest Idea

I've been thinking about this crazy idea for a contest under our CE Labs - and it would be open to engineers all around the world. The idea is to click a photograph through a camera.

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at 50k ft. above the ground, with the equipment that costs less than \$500. Let's say we ask the contestants to click photograph of the Earth. The prize could be \$5k for the winning team; say what?

What say, would that be interesting?
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Replies
• MemberJan 2, 2012

Great Idea Biggie, and do contestant have to share their designs? 😀
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Well it's just an idea and it seems that it'll require lot of planning. The contestants will have to submit their design and also submit photographs as well!
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• MemberJan 2, 2012

Yes, this is not small contest as the task is not easy game. 😉 we've to manage it very well with full planning. 😀
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• MemberJan 2, 2012

How are we supposed to get the camera to 50,000 ft?
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• MemberJan 2, 2012

silverscorpion
How are we supposed to get the camera to 50,000 ft?
That's the Challenge i think. 😉
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• MemberJan 2, 2012

The simplest solution is a tethered balloon carrying two cameras (hoping at least one works).
I did a rough calculatrion using nylon rope for the tether. The crucial factors are the weight and break strength of the tether.
The following is what came up: (Lengths are from bottom up).
Lengths for different dia ropes in series
5000 metres 5 mm dia
1000 metres 6 mm dia
1600 metres 10 mm dia
1000 metres 12 mm dia
1000 metres 16 mm dia
1200 metres 22 mm dia

One can get lower end 12 MP cameras @ 2/\$100 on sale. This leaves \$400 for the rope, balloon and the small electronic circuitry to trigger the cameras. May be workable.
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silverscorpion
How are we supposed to get the camera to 50,000 ft?
There lies the challenge. 😀

I'm going to need more time to see whether we can launch this challenge. In the mean time, I'll invite more ideas similar to this one.
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• MemberJan 3, 2012

bioramani
The simplest solution is a tethered balloon carrying two cameras (hoping at least one works).
I did a rough calculatrion using nylon rope for the tether. The crucial factors are the weight and break strength of the tether.
The following is what came up: (Lengths are from bottom up).
Lengths for different dia ropes in series
5000 metres 5 mm dia. The design includes a factor of safety of six.
It may be possible to optimize this by having three balloons in series, each at 5000 mtrs. In this case we need to use only the 5 mm rope with savings in cost and ease of deployment.

Another wacky idea is to have a free floating balloon, use an altimeter to trigger the shot as the balloon crosses 50 K feet and send the image by telemetry. May be a cellphone camera and image transfer. We will lose the gadget though as there is no way to recover it within a \$500 budget.
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Check -

It's possible 😀
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• MemberJan 6, 2012

The_Big_K
Check -

It's possible 😀
I'm abashed. There is nothing new under the sun, is there?
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• MemberJan 19, 2012

These guys did with \$150 😏, even being able to recover device via GPS -> #-Link-Snipped-#

\$500 is more than enough to carry this out 😀

In short, we can list what we need:
- Weather balloon (and the permission from local aviation authority)
- Helium gas
- GSM phone with GPS + Camera capabilities and good battery (or separate camera)
- Altimeter (optional? we can estimate altitude when balloon bursts)
- Light sturdy box to protect and insulate components
- Small parachute
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• MemberJan 29, 2012

An update:
<a href="https://news.yahoo.com/blogs/upshot/lego-man-space-moves-230122438.html" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">Lego man in space moves the Web</a>
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