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Two Harbors Weather Balloon Launch and Landing

Edge of SpaceStudents and science teachers at Two Harbors High School recently embarked on a project bringing their equipment to the upper edges of the Earth’s atmosphere during a week-long S.T.E.M. camp (science, technology, engineering and math).

The students teamed up with the National Weather Service office in Duluth and the Lake County Radio Amateurs to learn about the atmosphere, problem solve and analyze the live data packets received from the on-board sensors and track its location via GPS and APRS systems, both of which failed near the end of the flight. Recovery relied on extrapolating altitude, pressure and temperature data from the sensors to estimate a landing area. The parachute was visible in a tree a few hundred yards away from the estimate. Two Harbors science teachers involved were Penny Juenemann (biology), Mark Schlangen (physical science), and Brian Rauvola (chemistry). All students involved were heading into 8th grade.

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