Wednesday, October 30, 2013


Thanks to help from the Keene Sentinel and the people of southern New Hampshire, our balloon's red parachute was spotted in a clearing and we were contacted on October 24, 2013. We were thrilled to learn that our balloon had landed in a meadow without damage to the exterior of the payload capsule. The balloon's landing site is shown below.

We rushed home to open the package when it arrived in the mail from Bennington, New Hampshire. After cutting the duct tape sealing the capsule, we were excited to find that all the components were present and intact after their 200 kilometer flight and three weeks in the elements. After surviving nearly three weeks of rain, high winds, and below-feezing temperatures, we were shocked to find that many of the electronics turned on.

Upon closer examination, we were not so fortunate. The photos captured by the iPhone 4 were poor quality and the phone had a large damage mark in the center of the screen. 

We were, however, able to upload over 1,000 data points from the Arduino, which had recorded the capsule's altitude and the temperature and pressure of the upper atmosphere. We will be graphing these points and writing accompanying reports for our presentation at the New York State Science and Engineering Fair in 2014.

As for the future, we are preparing to launch a second balloon payload in mid-Novemver, 2014. After learning from our first launch, we have revised our payload design extensively and will be utilizing more advanced and lighter equipment. Our second launch, code named Mission Beta, will take more accurate readings of radiation throughout the Ozone Layer and will incorporate three tracking systems to ensure that its landing site is precisely recorded, making the balloon more easily locatable. 

No comments:

Post a Comment