Launch of a weather balloon

Launch of a weather balloon

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Credit: MARK BURNETT/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Launch of a weather balloon. Weather balloons are used to obtain data from the upper atmosphere. The envelope of the balloon is made from a highly- elastic latex, and is filled with helium. The balloon carries aloft a radiosonde. This is a package of transducer instruments which measure the local pressure, humidity, temperature and so forth. The radiosonde then sends the data back to the ground station using a radio transmitter. As the balloon gains altitude, the local pressure drops and the balloon expands. At about 100,000 feet (30,480 metres) altitude, the balloon bursts and the instrument package is returned to Earth by a small parachute.

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Keywords: atmosphere, atmospheric research, balloon, climate, meteorological research, research, weather, weather balloon

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