Radiosonde

© Brooke Clarke 2017

Background
Description
Photos
    Space Data Corp.
    Air Inc Airsonde AS-1A-PTH
    Viz
   
    Viz Mark II
        Viz MD-210B/AMT-4B Modulator
        Viz T-435A/AMT-4B Transmitter
    Vaisala RS80-67
Patents
Related
References
Links

Background 

This is part of my interest in weather and Electronics/Radio.

Typical frequencies are 403 and 1680 MHz.  These are typically lofted using a free balloon, but sometimes are dropped from aircraft using a parachute.  They can be tracked using a Pilot Balloon Theodolite or by means of an automatically following receiving antenna.  The most modern radiosondes make use of GPS.

Description (Wiki)

The first generation were balloon carried radio transmitter sending barometric pressure (altitude), temperature and humidity back to a ground station.  A Pilot Balloon (Pibal) theodolite would track the balloon by recording azimuth and elevation vs. time, which can be converted to a map of the balloon location and altitude.  A fist step in making a weather map or forecast.

Later special radar sets replaced the pibal theodolites.  The latest units contain built-in GPS receivers..

This radiosonde was made by Space Data Corp.
6660-NC-830-3482
Cage: 27555
Mfg p/n: 691-4005-02
Contract: F04606-89-C-1041  (year 1989)

Photos

Space Data Corp.

Fig 1 SDC

SDC
                        Radiosonde

Fig 2

SDC
                        Radiosonde

Fig 3 Paper Tape and Humidity
sensor on lid.

SDC
                        Radiosonde

Fig 4

SDC
                        Radiosonde




A.I.R. Inc Airsonde Model: AS-1A-PTH radiosonde

250 to 1050 MB
Base station coefficients:
Tc.A2(2).A1(2).A0(2);
0 90 -60 -95 5 70
Carrier Freq. Mhz    403.500

Atmospheric Instrumentation Research

Patent 4112753
4112753
                      Meteorological measuring apparatus
Fig 1 New in sealed bag
A.I.R. Inc Airsonde Model: AS-1A-PTH
                      radiosonde
Fig 2
A.I.R. Inc Airsonde Model: AS-1A-PTH
                      radiosonde




4907449 Meteorological data encoder for measuring atmospheric conditions, A.I.R., Inc., Mar 13, 1990, 73/170.28, 73/724, 374/170 -

4112753 Meteorological measuring apparatus, David B. Call, Sep 12, 1978, 73/170.28, 340/870.1 -
"
A radiosonde is conformable for use either as a disposable sonde in which the device will ascend vertically to a predetermined altitude and when the balloon from which it is suspended bursts at a maximum altitude the sonde will automatically flip over and autogyrate at a reduced rate of descent back to earth; or may be used as a tethered radiosonde in which it is suspended from a tethered balloon in such a way as to be freely rotatable about a substantially horizontal axis. In either version, the sonde is characterized by a generally helicoidal propeller construction having thermistor-receiving end tips and whereby the propellers will impart sufficient spin or rotation to the sonde as to cause the desired degree of aspiration to provide accurate wet bulb psychometric measurements; and further the propeller construction is such as to permit freefall at a reduced controlled rate of speed without the assistance of a parachute."

4543836 Modular cup-type anemometer, David B. Call, Atmospheric Instrumentation Research, Inc., Oct 1, 1985, 73/861.85, 416/197.00A, 416/212.00A -

Viz


Viz Mark II radiosonde




Viz MD-210B/AMT-4B Modulator




Viz T-435A/AMT-4B Transmitter




Vaisala RS80-67 radiosonde









Patents

Olland radio meteorograph, NBS RP-1169, VOl 22, 1939 - is mentioned in some of the patents.
Diamond-Hinman UHF Tx "Research Paper RP 1329" NBS Vol 25, Sep 1940) "An Improved Radiosonde and It's Performance".

2027367 System of determining meteorological conditions by radio, William R Blair, Jan 14, 1936, 342/450, 340/870.28, 73/170.28, 340/870.1, 455/61, 342/460 - AM & FM modulation
2230779 Pyrometer potentiometer, Manfred J Johnson, Lewis Eng Co, Feb 4, 1941, 374/166, 374/E07.16, 340/870.1, 374/181, 340/870.17, 236/69, 324/98 - thermocouple w/cold junction comp, lab inst
2277692 Measuring cloud height and thickness, Dunmore Francis W, Mar 31, 1942, 73/170.28, 356/28, 250/208.3, 250/214.00R, 367/130, 250/564, 250/222.1, 340/870.1, 346/33.00B - phototube modulates UHF Tx, hung from pilot balloon
2323317 Altitude measuring, Francis W Dunmore, Evan G Lapham, Sec of Commerce, Jul 6, 1943, 324/461, 455/95, 342/462, 340/870.1, 73/384, 367/118, 310/301 - pressure -> resistence (ionozed air gap)-> audio modulation frequency ( 40 to 200 Hz.)
2347160 Radiometeorograph transmitting apparatus, Wallace Charles F, Wallace & Tiernan Inc, Apr 18, 1944, 340/870.1, 340/870.28, 73/170.28, 340/870.13, 200/56.00R, 340/870.12, 200/19.21 - Temperature, pressure, relative humidity
2347345 Radiometeorograph transmitting apparatus, Wallace Charles F, Wallace & Tiernan Inc, Apr 25, 1944, 340/870.1, 340/870.12, 340/870.16, 188/185, 200/56.00R, 340/870.13, 73/170.28 - Temperature, pressure, relative humidity
2355739 Meteorological apparatus, Mccabe Ira E, Aug 15, 1944, 340/815.73, 126/263.1, 340/870.1, 362/92, 362/458, 429/158, 126/263.5 - Dry battery heater for very cold operation
2381009 Chronometric radiosconde system, Slderman Joseph A, Aug 7, 1945, 340/870.1, 307/651, 455/91, 340/870.12, 340/870.16, 340/870.13, 307/650, 455/98 - resistive sensors coupled with clockwork
2396955 Radiosonde, Lange Karl O, Mar 19, 1946, 340/870.1, 455/98, 340/870.28, 340/870.13, 340/870.12 - clockwork driving a helical switch
2409155 Radio transmission apparatus, Gibbs Norman E, Schellens Eugene L, R W Cramer Company Inc, Oct 8, 1946, 340/870.1, 340/870.18, 455/98, 340/870.12, 340/870.13 - clockwork driven as unit decends from balloon
2418836 Remote recording system, Hawes Bradford K, Gen Electric, Apr 15, 1947, 346/34, 346/62, 340/870.1, 340/870.38, 340/870.18 - can produce a roll chard with 4 seperate traces.
2425537 Calibration of radiosondes, John Hornbostel, Edison Inc Thomas A, Aug 12, 1947, 73/1.6, 340/870.1 - plots millibars vs. % time cycle by serial number of barometer
2454320 Hygrometer and switch for radiosondes, John Hornbostel, Edison Inc Thomas A, Nov 23, 1948, 200/61.6, 73/335.13, 340/870.1 - chronometric type, temp compensated hydrogemeter
2476400 Automatic transmission of data from aircraft, Peter R Murray, Apr 19, 1949, 340/870.18, 340/870.26, 340/870.27, 340/539.1, 340/870.1, 340/539.17, 340/670, 340/13.24 - audio subcarrier telemetry
2468703 Chronometric electronic radiosonde system, Hammel Clifford M, Serdex Inc, Apr 26, 1949, 340/870.1, 374/142, 370/213, 374/143, 340/870.28, 327/551, 340/870.15 - complex pulse modulation (many tubes)
2500186 Meteorological telemetering system, Morris Kline, Us Sec War, Mar 14, 1950, 342/425, 340/870.11, 340/870.1 - Pulse repition rate modulation, scanning tracking antenna (Diamond-Hinman UHF Tx "Research Paper RP 1329" NBS Vol 25, Sep 1940)
2509215 Radiosonde, Craig Leo S, Leon Hillman, Us Socretary Of War, May 30, 1950, 340/870.1, 340/870.12, 340/870.13, 369/22, 73/170.28, 374/142 - phono record w/4 arms Tx fixed autio tones, can receiver with headphones.
2547009 Telemetering system, William D Huston, James M Brady, Apr 3, 1951, 340/870.1, 369/22, 200/DIG.340, 340/870.18, 340/870.28, 340/870.13 - phono record w/multiple arms
2591600 Radiosonde calibration method, Pear Jr Charles B, Washington Inst Of Technology, Apr 1, 1952, 374/1, 331/48, 340/870.1, 331/167, 331/64, 331/143, 331/65, 340/870.18, 331/54, 73/170.28, 331/177.00R, 340/870.4 - for use with British patent 235254 June 11, 1925.  Resistance to audio frequency.
2613347 Modulator, for radiosonde apparatus, William Todd, Sec of War, Oct 7, 1952, 332/131, 340/870.1, 455/95 - FM modulation, uses a  tube blocking oscillator to convert resistance changes into pulses.
2689342 Pressure operated switching device, Goudy Paul R, Kollsman Instr Corp, Sep 14, 1954, 340/870.1, 200/83.00R, 200/81.5, 439/31, 340/870.13, 340/870.16 - uses two barometric elements with different pressure ranges to improve accuracy.
2701354 Airborne radiosonde recorder, Bennett Aubert E, Feb 1, 1955, 340/870.1, 346/101, 340/870.26, 340/870.18, 340/870.28, 346/33.00B - airborne receiver/recorder w/o ink  

8825232 Systems and applications of lighter-than-air (LTA) platforms, Space Data Corporation, Sep 2, 2014, 701/4, 244/128 - While about balloon control it seems to be a way to provide internet.

Related

weather
Electronics
Radio
Pibal Theodolites

References

Radiosonde Museum of North America - The Collection -

The Invention and Development of the Radiosonde, 2002,  - patent list from appendix shown above.

Recent Applications of Radio to the Remote Indication of Meteorological Elements (pdf), Harry Diamond, April 1941 - Explains:
* the Olland method from 1872 and it's problems,
* Carrier-Frequency Variation method from Norway,
* Modulation-Frequency Variation method does not require a clockwork and elimination of mechanical contacts
* a full ground weather station that uses radio to send temperature, humidity, wind direction, wind speed, and rain data to a remote location is described.

YouTube: Radiosondes & Weather Balloons: "Weather Friend or Foe" ~ 1957 US Army; The Big Picture TV-363 (0:27:08) -
YouTube:
Vaisala RS92-SGP Radiosonde teardown -

Links

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Page Created 17 March 2017