Innovation Quarter News

Members of Inmar IT Team to Participate in Global Balloon Launch

Inmar, a company that operates intelligent commerce networks, today announced that members of its IT team will participate in the 2015 Global Space Balloon Challenge. They will join other members of the Python Piedmont Triad User Group to launch the high altitude balloon they have spent months developing.

Team ³Near Space Circus² will launch its balloon (NSC01) at sunrise on Monday, April 21, from either a vineyard west of Winston-Salem, or from Pilot Mountain, depending on weather and upper atmospheric winds. More than 200 teams from across the globe are expected to participate this year.

Their balloon¹s technical payload pays homage to the first NASA balloon flights in 1969 designed to take large area photographs of the earth from a very high altitude. Weighing about four pounds, the payload includes a networked cluster of seven Raspberry Pi computers and eight cameras, which will be a first in High Altitude Ballooning. It also is equipped with sensors, transmitters and other tech gear. The Raspberry Pi Foundation will publish the details of the project on social media.

Inmar application developer, Francois Dion, and technical architect, Jeff Clouse, have spent hundreds of hours working with other members of the Triad¹s Python User Group, including High Point University faculty and students, designing and building the systems and network that will record data and images throughout flight. The team¹s custom design enables a panoramic view and promotes high stability during flight.

³Our design is unique in a number of ways,² says Francois. ³Interestingly, we are using some of the very latest technology, as well as some that is 100 years old.² He adds that ³There is potential for failure, but that is what experimentation is about.²

More information about the event can be found at Learn more about the Team Near Space Circus entry at Read blogs at and

Media contact:
Sharon Joyner-Payne