Balloon Mapping Kit
Best for windless days, this DIY kit -- developed by community researchers from Public Lab -- enables you to take your own aerial photos from 1000 ft or higher. For windy conditions, complement it with a Kite Mapping Pack.
Using the open source tool MapKnitter, you can stitch the resulting images into an online map -- your own "counter-cartography" version of Google Maps. Use it to tell a different story from the "official" map -- document contamination (it was used to map the BP oil spill) or wetlands loss, or to record a temporary condition like the Occupy Oakland encampment.
To learn more about balloon mapping and get involved in the community, check out the open source documentation on the Public Lab website.
- a 5.5 foot (170cm) reusable* balloon made of a latex/chloroprene (neoprene) mix
- 1000 feet (305m) of 110lb test (55 kilo) Dacron line, pre-wound on a hoop winder
- protective canvas gloves for handling the line. Thin line can cause burns to unprotected hands.
- three high-strength (270lb) swivel clips. For attaching the balloon and camera
- ten rubber bands. for making a camera cradle
- reusable ties. for closing the balloon (2 hook/loop or 10 plastic)
- one 1" rubber ring. for attaching the balloon to the line
- one steel carabiner. for anchoring the balloon on the ground
- two aluminum mini carabiners. for attaching cameras to the line
- printed instruction booklet
- Pocket Guide to Grassroots Mapping
- reusable box with handle
*We are seeing 5-12 inflations if the balloon is minimally filled (40-50 cu ft) 3-5 if it is medium inflated (60-70 cu ft) and 2-3 inflations if the balloon is filled all the way to 80-85 cu ft.
International buyers MUST leave a phone number. Some international buyers may see additional import fees upon arrival.