Feeds

Texan stitches stratosphere into stunning panoramas

One mighty orb and six vid cameras for fully spherical imagery

Top three mobile application threats

The mighty orb...

Caleb and the expanding balloon

Caleb and his mighty orb

The massive balloon held under a couple of sheets

Hi-tech balloon control system

The balloon just before launch

Ready to roll...

The payload finally came down close to Salado, Texas, some 70km northeast of the launch site, but once Caleb had recovered his kit, the work really began.

Cunningly using the GoPro audio tacks to sync the footage in Audacity, Caleb was able to pull selected single frames from each of the six cameras to produce some impressive panoramas (best viewed here in Caleb's panoramic viewer):

The panoramic view at 2,300m

The panoramic view at 2,300m

Stitching video proved somewhat more challenging, not least because of the rotation of the payload. Here's an entertaining view of an uncorrected panorama:

As you can see from the balloon burst footage, Caleb was able to crack the problem using Hugin and a custom Python script. The full, tortuous process is described here.

The results speak for themselves. Here's another panoramic view and video of payload touch-down as seen from all six cameras:

Another panorama at 1,600m

Another lovely view at 1,600m

Caleb told us he's entirely self-taught, and currently earns a crust as a simulation engineer, having in the past "worn the hats of game developer, console programmer, and software engineer".

Regarding future stratospheric plans, he said: "I am floating an idea in my head to do another big launch with 12 GoPro Hero 3 cameras, redundant tracking systems, more data gathering, and a ground-based optical tracking system using a telescope and some software (the mount for which and the hardware for which I'll have to develop). It won't be easy, nor will it be soon." ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
Red-faced LOHAN team 'fesses up in blown SPEARS fuse fiasco
Standing in the corner, big pointy 'D' hats
KILLER SPONGES menacing California coastline
Surfers are safe, crustaceans less so
Opportunity selfie: Martian winds have given the spunky ol' rover a spring cleaning
Power levels up 70 per cent as the rover keeps on truckin'
KILLER ROBOTS, DNA TAMPERING and PEEPING CYBORGS: the future looks bright!
Americans optimistic about technology despite being afraid of EVERYTHING
Discovery time for 200m WONDER MATERIALS shaved from 4 MILLENNIA... to 4 years
Alloy, Alloy: Boffins in speed-classification breakthrough
Liftoff! SpaceX Falcon 9 lifts Dragon on third resupply mission to ISS
SpaceX snaps smartly into one-second launch window
Elon Musk's LEAKY THRUSTER gas stalls Space Station supply run
Helium seeps from Falcon 9 first stage, delays new legs for NASA robonaut
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.