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#1 Scottb64

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Posted 05 October 2017 - 06:25 PM

Why it's challenging to deploy Google's internet-beaming balloons in Puerto Rico

http://mashable.com/...o/#3ehHL0yWX5qE

 

Hurricane Maria demolished Puerto Rico’s brittle electrical grid in one slash across the island. In doing so, it also took the broadband infrastructure with it. A fix could soon be high-altitude concepts for beaming internet to disaster-stricken areas from the sky, but innovations such as X's Project Loon (X is an innovation lab within Google's parent company, Alphabet) are still in their R&D phase, and not yet ready to be deployed.

 

 

HBAL 194 has been near Puerto Rico the last week, drifting NE, but now seems to be heading back SW.

Once in operation it will allow cell phone service if charging can be found.



#2 Bill Slugg

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Posted 05 October 2017 - 07:02 PM

The PR situation will light a fire under the folks developing airborne cell towers for emergencies. It is not trivial. Go look at a cell tower, see how fat the cables are and how heavy the antennas are. There is LOT of data to massage.


Edited by Bill Slugg, 05 October 2017 - 07:06 PM.


#3 Scottb64

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Posted 06 October 2017 - 02:53 PM

They came down to 55,000 and are well within the range of the Dominican Republic right now. From what I have seen it depends on the winds, but would probably be in range for a few days in an emergency if need. With hurricanes there is some warning and they could be flown far enough away to not be overly influenced by the storm. Earthquakes would take longer but even launch hundreds of mile away they would be in range in a short time.



#4 Scottb64

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Posted 06 October 2017 - 05:35 PM

There is now a balloon over the Atlantic HBAL017, but I haven't seen any making it to Europe or Africa yet. Terminating the flight overland for re-use would make the most sense. Solar panels and electronics can have someone there to pick them up and send them back for re-use or a FedEx tag.



#5 DocM

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 01:51 PM

@matthewberryfcc
BREAKING: FCC issues experimental license to Google to provide emergency cellular service in Puerto Rico through Project Loon balloons.
https://twitter.com/...446259598299140

Edited by DocM, 07 October 2017 - 01:52 PM.

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#6 Scottb64

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 02:24 PM

Just saw that. What I originally saw implied the equipment wasn't even installed yet, hopefully it can start relaying data and calls soon. Looking at the launch system I would think they could quickly fly one in and launch others as needed.



#7 Scottb64

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Posted 08 October 2017 - 04:58 PM

Right now there are three balloons well withing range and another to the Northwest.



#8 Scottb64

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Posted 08 October 2017 - 07:09 PM

Looking at the upper winds the one to the North is headed in the right direction. One thing I've noticed is all the news reports seem to emphasis the winds at high altitude. The balloon coming in from the North is at a blazing 39kts. at 55,900 feet. The one over Puerto Rico shows 1kt, at 51,800 feet 5,000 feet below where it was a few days ago.



#9 TheBigCat

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Posted 09 October 2017 - 04:22 AM

Should ask...How did Arricebo weather the storm?



#10 Bill Slugg

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Posted 09 October 2017 - 09:59 AM

I was best buds with the son of the guy who was the general contractor at Arecibo. Last name was Samford. His son, "Crazy Bill" was a convicted felon living here on Lake Loretta in Albany, GA. He lived right next door to my church and was a frequent customer at my sharpening business. Since he was a felon (drug distribution I am fairly sure), he could not carry a pistol. Instead, he armed himself with a Coast Guard approved flare gun. It will kill you just as dead as a gun except it does it over a period of minutes as you burn to death covered with flaming chemicals (magnesium? phosphorus?). Bill drove his golf cart out on to Dawson Rd one day and got nailed by a car. He died a few weeks later but I don't know why. He and his wife would scream at each other the most vile profanities at the top of their lungs, inside their house, with me as their visitor. He/she were a study in dysfunctionality.


Edited by Bill Slugg, 09 October 2017 - 10:03 AM.


#11 Scottb64

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Posted 09 October 2017 - 02:36 PM

Last I saw was it had minor damage but no power. The dish itself is mesh so water and wind are not a problem


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#12 Ath3na

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Posted 09 October 2017 - 05:23 PM

Mesh antennas have a remarkably high wind-load.  Anyone that's worked on Point/Point radio will tell you they've seen towers folded around mesh dishes. 


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#13 Scottb64

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Posted 14 October 2017 - 04:23 PM

https://www.bing.com...lloon&FORM=IGRE



#14 Ath3na

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Posted 14 October 2017 - 04:52 PM

No one is going to click on your random search links. Relevant content or go away.
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#15 Scottb64

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Posted 24 November 2017 - 08:48 PM

Now there are 8 balloons over or around Puerto Rico.

 

Obviously relevant, their getting pretty good at directing balloons.  





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