"People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it." - George Bernard Shaw

Latest entries
My Family of Rovers

My Family of Rovers

Ever since reading about the first mars rover, Sojourner, I have been fascinated by autonomous rovers.  Building something which must go out and survive on its own, possibly on a planet far away, is such an interesting challenge! I have built many things over the years, but I am most proud of my three “Mars...

CubeSat Database

Full PhD info here… CubeSat database 2002-2013
Sandy Rover

Sandy Rover

Sandy rover was originally built with the aim of leaving it to wonder autonomously in the Namib Desert in Namibia.  Sandy was built using minimal components to make it as cheap as possible.  I wanted Sandy to roam autonomously, powered by the sun, while I monitored its location remotely using a web interface.  I hoped...
SUNSET 2 - Near Space Balloon

SUNSET 2 – Near Space Balloon

SUNSET2 was launched and recovered successfully a few weeks ago. This was my second attempt at a Propeller powered near-space balloon. You can read about the partially successful first attempt here. The motivation for SUNSET2 came from a friendly guy named Mark Shepstone, who approached me through the university.  He had read about my previous...
SUNSET 1 - Near Space Balloon

SUNSET 1 – Near Space Balloon

For my final year electronic engineering project I designed and launched a near-space balloon powered by the Parallax Propeller.  My 50 page report, a slideshow and firmware can be downloaded here,  but I will also give a short description below: The project was called SUNSET (Stellenbosch University Near-Space Engineering Testbed). It had the following capabilities:...
Receiving Weather Satellite Images

Receiving Weather Satellite Images

–legacy post: this content was originally written in high school– Another amazing thing you can do with a 2m radio is receive weather satellite images directly from the satellites.  There is a group of satellites called NOAA, which orbit the earth constantly sending down an image of the earth just below them.  Although my Jingtong...
International Space Station Communication

International Space Station Communication

–legacy post: originally written in high school– The International Space Station has a 2m rig onboard. Occasionally the ISS crew have voice contacts with the ground using their 2m radio, however, they almost always occur over europe. The rest of the time the 2m rig is set up for digital communication. First I had to...