Measurements of Atmospheric Physics with a Weather Balloon

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Publication Title

Bulletin of the American Physical Society

Conference Name

Fall 2019 Meeting of the Ohio-Region Section and the Michigan Section of the American Association of Physics Teachers


The Kettering University Physics Club built, launched, and recovered a weather balloon, which was tracked in real-time using a radio transmitter. The balloon traveled 45 km from the launch location and reached an altitude of 35 km at its peak. The flight computer took measurements of atmospheric pressure, temperature, and speed as a function of latitude, longitude, and altitude. A 360-degree camera was also used to acquire continuous video during the 3.75 hour flight and resulted in some stratospheric images of southeastern Michigan distinctly showing the curvature of the Earth. The measured profiles of temperature as a function of altitude were approximately consistent with the model of the U.S. Standard Atmosphere.


The authors would like to thank the Kettering University Student Government for financial support.