Note the 4 party balloons that all started out the same size before they were inflated, on their way to 30,500 meters (100,000 feet ) from a balloon flight last year. On our upcoming flight we will inflate 4 of the same size balloons – the first balloon will be inflated to about 1/4 of its capacity (like the yellow balloon in the photo), the second balloon to about 1/2 of its capacity (see the green balloon above), the third to about 3/4 its capacity (Note the orange balloon), and the fourth balloon will be inflated close to full (Note the red balloon above). What will happen to them during the flight? What are the characteristics of the atmosphere that may effect them and what, if any, will that effect be? Explain your conclusion.
When we launch the “High Hopes” high altitude weather balloon we will include this experiment. We will have a camera recording what happens to the balloons and share those images with you after the flight in late April or early May 2018. So do your research about our atmosphere, discuss with your collaborators, do some heavy thinking, then write what you think will happen. You could even leave your written thoughts here as a comment if you’d like.
Next, check back here to see what really does happen.