I’ve been a big fan of you guys for a long time and love the fact that you are based in Newcastle. I know that you host a TTN gateway at your headquarters in Adamstown and was wondering if you had considering setting up a radiosonde_auto_rx station?
radiosonde_auto_rx is an application used to track radiosondes launched by meteorological departments across the world. Here in Australia BOM launches daily radiosondes from 35 sites including at Newcastle Airport. These radiosondes broadcast at ~400 MHz with the RS41 radiosondes launched from Newcastle transmitting on 402.500 MHz.
They are attached to large helium balloons and rise to a high of 30,000m before bursting and returning to the ground with a parachute. They transmit their location and weather information such as temperature and humidity throughout this process which we can decode with radiosonde_auto_rx.
This information is received with an RTLSDR by radiosonde_auto_rx running on a Raspberry Pi where it is processed and uploaded to the SondeHub database where it joins the data from ~400 stations. You need a suitable antenna for receiving these signals but with a good setup, you can receive data from over 100km away.
The recommended setup is a Raspberry Pi 4 with an RTLSDR V3 dongle (which would be great if you could stock) however other dongles such as the Adafruit RTL2832 you stock should work albeit with lower accuracy.
The uploaded data is all freely accessible and powers the SondeHub Tracker which lets you track radiosondes across the world and predict where they will land. This landing prediction capability allows you to recover these radiosondes which can be reprogrammed and also reduces environmental littering as BOM makes no recovery attempts.
I see that you had a Radiosonde land right outside your office just a few weeks ago: SondeHub Tracker
*Full disclosure, I am a contributor to radiosonde_auto_rx and SondeHub Tracker