Back from the Edge of Space

October 18, 2016

If you have been wondering what happened to the China Primary objects launched on the high altitude weather balloon last month, wonder no more!

The weather balloon was retrieved from its final coordinates near Peaks Island (44°29'29.437"N 68°15'23.43"W) by the UMaine High Altitude Ballooning Program. Then China Primary third and fourth graders, assisted by China parent Kern Kelly, were able to dig into the payload boxes and discover what happened with each of their experiments.

One of Pop Rocks covered marshmallows expanded, absorbing the Pop Rocks into the marshmallow.  The egg survived the journey intact but somehow weighed less (possibly due to an initial measurement error).  The cookie dough was a little worse for the trip, having turned brown and somewhat dried out, and the bouncy balls had lost some of their bounce after their voyage to the edge of space. Only the frozen Hershey’s Kisses seemed unchanged.

Our young scientists shared their predictions and base calculations and observations with the CPS student body last Thursday and then shared their results.   The presentation included a video of the bouncy balls before and after.

Honestly, I think our staff was just as eager to learn what had happened!” said China educator and instructional coach Lacey Sudholme, “Overall it was an awesome experience! We hope to make it happen again!”