Anyone ever deploy a helium filled balloon from a rocket to help locate the rocket's landing site? The balloon would have to be tethered to the rocket of course, and the tether would have to be taller than any crops that the rocket might land in.
I was thinking 3" and above diameter rockets. Balloon already inflated prior to launch.But wouldn't the balloon lift the rocket up and carry it away? Also, how would it be deployed? I am assuming that you are talking about storing the uninflated balloon and a pressurized can of helium somewhere in the rocket, and then at some point, either during the descent or upon landing, the balloon would be released from its container, inflated, and then set free to float and bob on its tether. And many people think that dual-deploy is complicated! There are the design issues, and then there are the supply issues, such as: where could you obtain a small cartridge of He?
Having the rocket itself deploy some sort of non-permanent, easily viewed marker of its landing site is an interesting idea, though. Long streamers can sometimes do this once they have fulfilled their primary function.
Deployed while the rocket is descending or after it has touched down? A small motorized release mechanism, triggered by the altimeter, could be used, I suppose. The balloon would need to be in its own isolated compartment along with, and shielded from, the mechanism to release it. That would mean that the rocket would contain a bay for the electronics, a bay for the drogue, a bay for the main chute and a bay for the balloon. The balloon material would need to be tough enough to survive the deployment out of its bay and also to withstand the conditions in any environment that the rocket may land in (including among the branches in a treetop, if that is a possibility, or deep within a cornfield). Would it be possible to pack in a balloon that was large enough and visible enough from a distance to be worth all the trouble?I was thinking 3" and above diameter rockets. Balloon already inflated prior to launch.
I've always thought that was a good idea, but I've no idea where it falls under the "Do not install or incorporate in a high power rocket a payload that is intended to be flammable, explosive..." part of the safety code. I suppose you could say it's part of the recovery system and therefore not technically a payload?why not use a second smoke charge initiated after landing,
we already have the technology for that....