The video shows a severe weather research team in the US operating the two-balloon Windsond system “Swarmsonde” in heavy winds. As you can see, the sondes are launched directly from a car, illustrating the great portability of the small size Windsond system.
The research team’s ambition is to get close to, and in front of a tornado, in the inflow region, and launch Swarmsonde radiosondes. The team will get much closer to tornadoes than other groups in order to get measurements in the tornado at low altitudes. The sondes will become neutrally buoyant at about 100-200 m AGL and float toward the tornado vortex. Launching from a car this close to tornadoes is only made possible using the Windsond system due to the equipment’s advantageous and unique size.
How does Swarmsonde work?
When the sonde is released from the ground it is attached to two balloons instead of one. At a user-defined altitude, one balloon is automatically cut off from the sonde. The balloon that still is attached to the sonde makes it neutrally buoyant, giving measurements at the preferred altitude for a longer time.
More information on Swarmsonde: http://sparvembedded.com/Swarmsonde_flyer_v1.pdf
We have made an executive summary on what measurement capabilities we offer today and the current TRL (technology readiness level) for each offering. See link below.
Let us know if you have any questions.
Send email to firstname.lastname@example.org
The blog has not been updated much lately. We have worked a lot on the next Windsond version, S2. It has also been a very unique spring due to COVID-19 and we have been affected as almost everybody. It has not hit us as hard as was expected in the early stages of the pandemic, and we have not been required to slow down in regards to development or work force.
The office will be closed during July 11 – August 2 due to summer holidays. During this time, we can’t give you our usual, fast response time. However, if you have any inquiries during this period, please email both email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.
Closing in to 2020, we would like to tell you what we have been up to lately and tell about our availability during the Christmas holidays.
We have been happy with the Windsond S1 model, but we feel that we want to offer an even better radiosonde to the market. That is why we are developing next generation of Windsond, called “S2”. We also mentioned this in the newsletter from earlier this year. The development is still in an early phase, so we can not reveal any release date. We have great faith in Windsond S2 and we are eager to show you the result. Some improvements that S2 will bring:
– Lower weight
– Easier to use
– Quicker GPS fix
– Better battery life
– Adapted for soundings in rain
We have also started evaluating an optional add-on to Windsond S2, called H4, with sophisticated T/RH sensors. With response time of a fraction of a second and possible sampling rates of 10 Hz, this enables data of very high spatial resolution. Active heating can overcome condensation. This also opens up to supporting higher altitudes (maybe 10-20 km MSL).
We will share more information as development continues. Please reach out to us if you have any questions.
The office will be closed December 21st – January 2nd. We wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Sparv Embedded is helping Linköping University to integrate a high precision CH4 (methane) sensor from Aeris Technologies with the Sparvio system. The sensor has an unprecedented CH4 resolution for its size, measuring variations smaller than one ppb (parts per billion). This is more than enough to map background levels, around 2 ppm. To use the same unit, the sensor measures at 0.0001 ppm resolution. After we adapted the sensor for UAV use, the payload weighs in at 1.8 kg. This is light enough to be flown around 10 minutes with a fairly small quadcopter. If given more attention, the weight could be pushed down a lot more.
This offers an exciting possibility for more convenient sampling of methane, a gas with a greenhouse effect 84 times stronger than carbon dioxide when counted over 20 years after releasing the gas into the atmosphere. In spite of this, methane emissions are still largely ignored by industries and regulation. Can more measurements help to raise awareness of the environmental importance of methane?
The picture below is from the preparations for a demo on May 15th. It shows a quadcopter hovering with the white Aeris sensor attached underneath. The quadcopter also carries a Sparvio sensor system that synchronizes data from Aeris with readings from an ultrasonic wind sensor, GPS and other sensors. Sparvio logs all data and transmits it to a ground station to visualize on a map in real-time. In the end, the combination of all data will be used to calculate not only the location of methane emission sources, but also the quantity of gas flow.
Sampling in watercourses is an activity that today isn’t easy, but very important. You need to bring a boat on bad forest roads and spend a lot of time on logistics. It is not only hard and time-consuming to perform, but also expensive. Sparv Embedded is part of a team to come up with a UAV-based solution to make these samplings easier, faster and cheaper. We use the flexible sensor system Sparvio and contribute our knowledge from working on UAV sensor solutions over the past few years. The pictures are from a demo performed on May 14th in Västervik, Sweden. At the demo, we flew a quadcopter over a lake, descending twice to allow the hanging payload to collect water samples at two different points. The samples can then be analyzed as usual in a lab.
In the next step, we will also directly measure temperature, pH, conductivity and most importantly oxygen levels. The data will be visible in real-time to the operator, allowing on-the-spot exploration of variations in water quality. This would be useful to map plumes of emissions, for example in case of chemical spills. Where a deviation is discovered, the drone could take a water sample for further analysis.
A complete Sparvio system attached to a customer’s drone. Sparvio parts attached are the data logger, radio module, T/RH sensor, wind sensor from Anemoment and a Figaro methane sensor. Soon to be delivered.
More information about the Sparvio system: http://windsond.com/sparvio/
Have a great weekend!
We have had the pleasure to be visited by KNMI (Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute) representatives this week for a workshop on developing their novel NO2 sensor. We had a very productive workshop on practical design, measurement principles, project planning and also touching on eventual business ventures.
NO2 (Nitrogen dioxide) has a strong negative health effect. Due to a degradation time measured in minutes or hours and the low background levels, NO2 is a clear indicator of nearby pollution. The gas is almost exclusively produced from combustion, making the sources easy to pinpoint. This makes sampling NO2 suitable to make detailed maps of urban pollution.