John Glenn. Ham the Astrochimp. Balloon Boy. These icons pioneered the art of space travel and aviation innovation, expanding our perspective of the universe and ourselves. Back on Earth, the visionary minds at Duo Security, having conquered the globe with their Trusted Access platform, sought a new challenge. The answer was hovering many miles above: SPACE, the final frontier.
This summer during DEF CON 24, Duo traveled to the Mojave Desert to launch a tricked-out weather balloon in pursuit of the first two-factor authentication push from the boundary of space. In our documentary Duo in Space: Pushing the Boundary, find out what the heck we were thinking, learn about the tech behind the project, and see how the launch fared.
Stardate 2016.223: Our intrepid Duonauts traveled to the wilds of the Mojave, with a weather balloon, a crapton of electronics, and a dream. So how did the launch fare?
In this previously unreleased video, follow the Auth Zeppelin's journey and get some amazing (and sometimes dizzying) views of Earth from the perspective of the four on-board cameras.
Look back at Duo in Space's live stream during DEF CON 24, from assembling the vessel and communication gear, to filling and launching the balloon, to the chase and retrieval... and a special appearance from a bag of mango snacks.
How'd we get Duo in Space off the ground? With a lot of planning, tools and gadgets. In a series of blogs, our launch team gives a behind-the-scenes look at the technology and process that brought our high-flying dreams to life.
This spacey stunt may sound silly, but it’s powered by lots of serious tech. A latex balloon is our ticket to near space, but the magic really happens with the payload. What makes it go?
Before the advent of modern rocketry, ballooning took man closer to space and gave us a new perspective on the world. (Fun facts: Balloons were responsible for the first trip to the stratosphere, and the first photograph of Earth’s curvature.) In the spirit of this early aviation innovation, a balloon in the ballpark of 700g-3000g will power our ascent.
If a rough landing causes a GPS malfunction, this radio-direction-finding device will help us ping our way to the payload.
This amateur radio-based system assists with communication and location.
Our bulky buddy will keep all of the gadgets juiced up.
These are the tools for what we hope is our “Creation of Adam” moment. When the Push comes in, an actuator will engage the fake finger to approve the request, while the camera catches every nail-biting moment.
When we get within earshot of the payload, the sound will ultimately lead us to it.
If the APRS goes kaput, this device is our backup position reporting system.
This trusty tool will track the payload’s altitude and help us locate it when it returns to Earth.
Normally, a lack of wifi way, way up in the air would be hashtagged #firstworldproblems, but for Duo In Space it’s a non-negotiable. We’re crossing our fingers that this device will provide internet connectivity to our phone to receive the Duo Push.