Shock Tube Upgrades

August 19th, 2014

The hypersonic shock tube just keeps getting bigger.

High Speed Research at JP Aerospace

August 19th, 2014

We’re putting together a short video on hypersonic research at JPA. Here’s a still of one of our micro hypersonic vehicles during a low speed checkout flight. By low speed we mean 326 mph.

JP Aerospace in the New York Times!

July 18th, 2014

Mission Success!

July 18th, 2014

Away 100 and Away 101 were a complete success. This mission was to carry a bonsai and a flower arrangement for the Japanese artist Azuna Makoto to the edge of space for a photo shoot. Ten on board HD cameras captured the botanicals in flight. Both vehicle were recovered and the team is back home.

Flight Number 164 and 165

July 14th, 2014

Team JPA is rolling to the desert with Away 100 and Away 101. Heading up to the black with a flowers,a Bonsai and team of artists and film folks from Japan.  Wish us luck!

Our Japanese mission partner

Shock Tube Upgrade

July 12th, 2014

Mach 4 anyone? The newest upgrades on our hypersonic wind tunnel (shock tube) are ready for round one testing.

The shock tube will be used for active drag reduction studies.

Just for Fun

July 9th, 2014

Multiple Vehicle Operations

July 9th, 2014

For the last year we’ve been putting multiple vehicles in the air at once. This have given us lots of new operational capabilities. We videoed one vehicle from another, even seeing a balloon burst from a miles away. We can relay commands between vehicles and coordinate landing sites.

New Nozzle for the Hypersonic Shock Tube

June 30th, 2014

We just received the new nozzle for the shock tube from the 3D print house. We designed it but it needed laser lithographic instead of conventional printing so we had it printed by Shapeways. The shock tube runs at mach 2.2 now. The new nozzle will get it to Mach 3. After that we’re putting an expansion chamber on the end that will get it running at Mach 4.

Ballast Tanks Installed on the Submarine

June 30th, 2014

This weekend we installed the ballast tanks on Bellavia.

Three Flights, Lots of Research

June 29th, 2014

On May 4th we flew three high altitude missions. We carried 800 PongSat student experiments and ten MiniCube payloads. We also conducted ATO engine and flight control experiments and telemetry experiments.

All the flight went really well. One balloon didn’t go as high as we wanted but we still exceeded all the mission objectives.

Here’s the altitudes:

Away 97:   98,944 feet
Away 98:   67,011 feet
Away 99:   103,337 feet
It took a couple of days but all vehicles were recover safe and sound. Nearly 900 people had experiments, projects or some kind of payload aboard the three flights.

Off to the Desert

May 3rd, 2014

The team is heading out to Northern Nevada in just a few minutes. We are conducting three balloon flights to 100,000 feet. There are PongSats, MiniCubes, two Magneto-hydrodynamic tests on board along with several additional Airship to Orbit experiments. First lift off is Sunday morning at 7am.

Kickstarter Success!

April 28th, 2014

We made our Kickstarter goal!!!!!

Thank you everyone for supporting PongSats!!

We have 19 hours to go. Can we push it up even higher?


The Talking PongSat!

April 26th, 2014

STEM Nation just sent me a link to a great PongSat video they made. It’s great! It will make you smile.

Kickstarter Extended Goals

April 26th, 2014

What would happen if we went over the goal amount? Cool things would happen! We just updated the Kickstarter site with what would happen if we went over the funding amount:

What if we go over? What would we do with the money?
Extended Goals:

$16,000, (if we raise $5,000 over our goal) we will fly 500 more PongSats on the September mission. The extra funds would allow us to build an additional vehicle and buy the extra balloon and helium.

$22,000, (double the goal) we will fly another entire PongSat mission in the spring of 2015 with another 2000 Student experiments on board!

$36,000 This is the exciting. This will allow us to launch our whole new student exploration program: SeaPongs

We will carry student experiments to the depths of the sea and back again. We will do it by the thousands and completely free to students, teachers, explorers and anyone who wonders about the ocean depths. The vehicle is like an inverted balloon carrying the SeaPongs down below 5,000 feet and back again.