SEGETUZA

The aim of this project is to successfully launch and receive data from a dart rocket set to reach an altitude of 50 km. After being launched, the object itself is driven only by inertia, having no form of electronic control. Its payload consists of a camera that will capture 360-degree panoramic images and it is bound to record the evolution of the rocket for the entire mission. In addition to the camera, sensors have been integrated to record environmental data, such as radiation level, pressure, temperature, acceleration and magnetic field variations.

To facilitate its retrieval, the SEGETUZA dart uses two GPS devices which are part of the payload. One of them is a stand-alone picoAPRS radio modem upgraded with a space rated GPS receiver. The second unit is a commercial grade receiver directly integrated with a mobile network data modem used for periodically transmitting position information and payload data via GPRS.

Notably, SEGETUZA must be able to automatically deploy its own parachute, in order to make the retrieval possible. Thus, the core software uses data gathered from the accelerometer, GPS and pressure so that it can determine the key moment to deploy the parachute, by sensing the sudden altitude drop or certain thresholds regarding the altitude.