Firefly first transmission and open source software repository

We’re making the firefly boards because it seems like a lot of projects repeat the same ten steps.  If you’re going to launch a high altitude balloon with a camera on it (to take pictures of the curvature of the earth), build some remote sensing equipment, teach a class, or even launch a satellite you need the same basic components:

  • A small computer with an easy to use programming interface (emphasis on easy)
  • Battery power with charging circuits
  • Long range communications
  • The ability to use existing add on hardware like this and this
  • Some software you can borrow, reuse, and share
  • A place to talk about what your building to get help

This system gets you right to “step 10” in your project.  Steps 1 through 9 are already done!

I realize this is a really technical video, but we made the Firefly transmit out of the box without any code written by us at all. (and yes, it sounds a lot like those old modems you used to use to connect to AOL, because it’s very similar).

This is the firefly board transmitting in OOK on 433.92 Mhz the following message

“Lets transmit something. This is a test of the Firefly board. Callsign: N4LNX”

It’s transmitting on AM, over and over every second and is captured here on my Yaesu 857D about 200 meters away. This mode would be useful if you were using the Firefly as a beacon for something.

This board is for sale at:

The software and a wiki where we are adding HOW-TOs is hosted by Github.  You can get the software here and find the wiki here.


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