Flight Four - March 2, 2013 - Launch Summary
Balloon Size: 1200 gram
Payload Weight: 6.83 pounds
Neck Lift: 11.4 pounds
Free Lift: 4.57 pounds
Helium Used: 201 cu. ft. - roughly
Ascent Rate: 1250 ft/minute
Descent Rate: 1450 ft/minute using a 4 foot parachute
Burst Altitude (predicted): 100,000 feet
Burst Altitude (actual): 79,073 feet
HAM Call Signs: W0RC-1 and W0RC-2
Launch Location: Backus, MN Municipal Airport
Facebook Page: FMS STEM Facebook Page

This flight will used a 1200 gram balloon. We flew multiple payloads. We had two accelerated science classrooms fly their payloads. One room was Ms. Harrison's fifth grade classroom and the other was Mr. Hanson's 7th grade classroom. Ms. Harrison's 5th grade classroom was seeing how radiation effects their bean plants and their seeds that will be grown upon return. Mr. Hanson's classroom was studying the effects of radiation and temperature on meal worms. Both classes will report back and update their part of the after flight summary.

Our predicted flight path using the Near Space Ventures Inc website.

Our actual flight path using the data captured from the R-Trak HAB on board. We ran two of these trackers and the data was logged on the aprs.fi website. Data was cleaned up in MicroSoft Office. Once cleaned up, it was exported to the GPS Visualizer website which created a Goggle Earth rendering file.

Predicted Path as of March 2, 2013 @ 7:30am Actual Flight Path
Google Earth 3D Path from R-Trak HAB Data This flight made about 24,000 meters

We had a wonderful day with the High Altitude Balloon class. We started the day by meeting in Mr. Olson's room at 7:15 for a donut and a quick flight path prediction. Once we are sure we were flying, we double checked our gear and packed up the trucks for a drive north to Backus, MN. Here you can see the kids filling the 1200 gram Helium balloon with Mr. Olson and Mr. Kliest. The other students spent the time packing payloads and checking to make sure all the lines are secure and ready to fly.

Checking payloads Filling balloon outside hanger in Backus, MN
Counting down till launch! Away the payloads go. See you soon!

We packed into the cars and started heading south. We were sure it was going to go the direction we predicted based on our research and planning. The balloon popped a little sooner than we had thought it would. It made 79,073 feet! The balloon ended up coming down about 5 miles east of Pierz, MN in a plowed field. Luckly a couple of us were able to see the balloon coming down via the prachute right in front of us! Very cool! Here are some pictures the camera payload captured! Enjoy!

Here are some of our favorite pictures from the flight.

That is a lot of water! Near Backus, MN Looking east away from Backus, MN
Gull Lake from 43,375 feet looking straight down. Notice snowmobile trails. Mille Lacs from 63,139 feet! Lake Superior in lower left corner.
The horizon at 77,093 feet! The horizon at 77,093 feet!
On the way back. The sun at 29,317 feet.. The horizon at 73,231 feet!

All and all it was a great flight. We did forget the HOBO logger activation cable so we were unable to start it up so it would collect data. It will need to fly next year. The kids did a great job with the project. Their payloads survived the flight in one piece. The worms were still alive as well as the plants.

A nice shot of the kids at the landing zone! See you next year!!

Here are some larger images that show the wonderful planet we live on. Enjoy!

Image 01 Image 02 Image 03 Image 04
Mille Lacs Lake looking west from 72,127 feet. The Whitefish Chain from 43,000 feet. Leech and Upper and Lower Red from 72,564 feet. Gull Lake Chain from 43,000 feet.

Thanks to the following parents for driving and helping out with the kids. Mr. and Mrs. Kleist, Mrs. Oldham, Mr. Worden, Mrs. Lockwood, Mrs. Smith and Mr. Kvalevog. We appreciated all your help!