3689652395?profile=originalThe final Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) test flight -  codenamed PRATCHETT - will take off tomorrow (Saturday) from Colorado Springs East Airport at 13:30 local time (19:30 GMT).

The mission - designed to test our Vulture 2 spaceplane's avionics rig at altitude - is being conducted by our US allies at Edge Research Laboratory. They'll send this payload up to around 30,000m under a mighty meteorological balloon:


3689653978?profile=originalThe test is a second pop at seeing how our Pixhawk autopilot, servos, batteries, etc, perform in extreme cold at altitude. This time around, however, we've got a 900MHz radio rig on board, by which Andrew Tridgell will monitor the flight live from the comfort of his sofa in Australia. There are more details on that and the payload here.

It should be entertaining, so if you fancy cracking a beer and coming along for the ride, you'll be able to follow the flight live here.

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  • Yes, we've done a few tests in the freezer, but that's not low enough. We've got a plan to replace the lubricant in the servos with ultra-low temp grease, if necessary.

    Batteries are Energizer Ultimate Lithium - the only ones guaranteed to work, in our experience.

  • Good luck,
    Did you tested the servos into the home freezer? (~-35 degrees Celsius)
    All metal geared servos have oil/silicon based lubricators between gears and it can be freeze. May be you should clear the gears with alcohol before flight. did you?
    And the batteries, are they Energizer Ultimate Lithium? or Alkaline?

  • I whish you all the best and keep us posted.

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