Altus Metrum Logo

Open hardware and software designs for high powered model rocketry by Bdale Garbee and Keith Packard.

Bdale and Keith share a strong commitment to Free Software, and as long time contributors to the Debian project are fully committed to the Debian Social Contract. In the context of what you find here, this translates into an absolute commitment to respect user freedom:

  • all of our hardware designs are licensed under the TAPR Open Hardware License
  • all of our software is under the GNU General Public License or compatible licenses.
  • all of our design tools and the software we use to run our business is also Free Software

Bdale's online store has a form you can use to contact us.

Download the latest AltOS software version

Latest News

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Where to Buy the Hardware

Altus Metrum products are available directly from Bdale's web store, and from these distributors:


These products are available for purchase:

  • TeleMetrum was our original (and still our most popular!) product, a dual-deploy rocketry altimeter with GPS and RF telemetry link.

  • TeleMega is a high-end flight computer with 6 pyro channels, tilt limits, more and better sensors, GPS, and RF telemetry link.

  • TeleMini is our smallest dual-deploy rocketry altimeter with telemetry using only a barometric pressure sensor

  • EasyMega is a high-end flight computer with 6 pyro channels, tilt limits, etc. The design is essentially identical to TeleMega, but without the GPS receiver and radio telemetry link.

  • EasyMini is a small, low-cost, dual-deploy rocketry altimeter using just a barometry pressure sensor.

  • EasyMotor is an in-flight data logger for research motor characterization.

  • EasyTimer is a timer-based 2-channel pyro controller with tilt limits

  • TeleDongle is a simple USB to RF interface for use in ground stations interacting with rockets using any of our products with RF telemetry.

  • TeleBT is a variation on TeleDongle that adds Bluetooth as an alternative to USB. Particularly useful with the AltosDroid app for Android devices, or the compatible iOS application available for sale from our friends at Iron Sheep Productions.

  • TeleGPS is a GPS tracker and logger.

  • TeleLaunch is a wireless launch control system capable of operating up to 792 pads.

  • LipoCharger is a standalone battery charger for the Lithium Polymer batteries used in Altus Metrum products.

  • MicroPeak is a rocket altimeter that is both precise and tiny, designed to be the ideal altimeter for model rocket contests.

  • MicroPeak USB Interface provides an interface between MicroPeak and USB to download flight log data.


These are projects we're working on that may become products someday:

  • AltOS is the name of the firmware and related utilities that Keith maintains for the set of hardware projects here.

  • AltosDroid is the name of our Android app based on AltOS.

  • ChaosKey is a true hardware random number generator that connects over USB.

  • OpenAlt was Bdale's original project here, a dual-deploy rocketry altimeter. One prototype was built, but never flown.

  • QuantiMotor is a wireless system for operating rocket motor test stands.

  • TeleNano is a tiny rocketry altimeter with telemetry using only a barometric pressure sensor

  • TelePyro is a companion board for TeleMetrum that adds 8 additional pyro channels.

  • TeleScience is a companion board for TeleMetrum that adds 12 channels of thermistor or generic analog sensor input, and 5 general purpose I/O lines.

  • TeleShield is an Arduino radio shield.

  • TeleTerra is a hand-held ground station for use with TeleMetrum and TeleMini.


Awards and Recognition

Hobby Rocketry

The motivation for the circuits and software you will find on this site is our loosely-knit group's shared interest in hobby rocketry. This very brief Ted presentation by Steve Jurvetson quickly conveys at least part of why we do this. John Coker has published an excellent overview of hobby rocketry on his web site. Keith has also put together some useful notes about the process of certification to fly high power rockets. And thanks to Maddie for pointing out the paghes that Lisa Richards maintains.

To find more information about the rockets Bdale and his son have built, see Garbee Rockets.

As Bdale and Robert became more experienced in the hobby and started to build and fly more sophisticated projects, we started to feel limited by the existing electronics products available. OpenAlt was Bdale's first attempt to address this situation with a completely open hardware and software design... other project have since followed, and it's cool to have help from Keith and other friends!

Using Altus Metrum Products


Getting Involved

If you aren't already playing with model rockets, that's a good place to start. Finding a local NAR Section or Tripoli Prefecture is a good idea, since you can learn a lot and see some great flights by showing up at a club launch.

As we make progress, you can read about it in our News feed. Feel free to subscribe to our mailing list. We also hang out on IRC channel #altusmetrum on if you have questions that aren't answered here. You can also find us on Facebook, though note we don't check Facebook very often.

Our main projects include radio links. If you don't already have one, getting an Amateur Radio license would be a good thing to do!

And if you just can't wait to show your support for our efforts, visit our Cafe Press Logo Shop and buy a t-shirt or sticker!

United States flag Altus Metrum products are designed and manufactured in the United States of America.

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