Project Horus 55: Live Video from a High Altitude Balloon

Project Horus 55 was a project that involved creating a high altitude balloon with payload that could broadcast live video down to ground station observers, as well as creating the ground station receive hardware. On March 7th 2021 the balloon was launched and ground station observers successfully received the live video.

The transmission hardware onboard the balloon was a Raspberry Pi Zero which captured and compressed the video, and a LimeSDR Mini which broadcast a DVB-S signal at 445 MHz. Power amplification was provided by an 800mW LDMOS amplifier. On the ground station side, RTL-SDRs were used as the receiving hardware and SDRAngel as the software. Although high gain auto tracking Yagi’s were used by the main ground station team, it’s interesting to note that the balloon chase team were also able to receive the video with a simple vechicle mounted turnstile.

In the video below Mark VK5QI who was one of the people behind the project discusses the setup before the launch.

Live Amateur TV from 100,000 feet!

The video below shows the launch and some of the live video received.