Photo Album: Balloon launch over Livermore


Students from the Bates High Altitude Ballooning Club of Lewiston launch a helium filled balloon Friday from Perley Field in Livermore. The balloon carried sensors to record altitude, temperature, speed and a GPS tracker that sent information to the ground crew every five minutes to let them know the balloon location. Two cameras on board took-time lapse pictures as the balloon reached 30,000 feet before the payload parachuted back down to Earth. “Just because,” said junior Max Bartley. “It’s cool information to look at,” Bartley said about the data they would analyze. The balloon was expected to be in the air for about two hours and land just southwest of Sebago Lake, club President Christopher Barker said. It landed in a tree in Gorham Daryn Slover/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

Students from the Bates High Altitude Ballooning Club of Lewiston, from left, Loren Andrews, Max Bartley, Jackson Donahue, Christopher Barker and Tucker Barber (hidden), point to their weather balloon Friday as it lifts off above Perley Field in Livermore. Barker said Perley Field was chosen based on wind patterns. The helium-filled balloon with a GPS tracker landed in a tree in Gorham. Daryn Slover/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

Bates College juniors Matt Clayton, left, Loren Andrews and Max Bartley of the Bates High Altitude Ballooning Club of Lewiston secure the payload Friday inside a foam sphere. A gyroscope inside the ball maintained orientation of a GPS device so students could track the balloon from Livermore accurately. “It’s our first time using a gyroscope,” Bartley said. “Every launch is different. We will see how it goes.” Daryn Slover/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

Christopher Barker, left, president of the Bates High Altitude Ballooning Club of Lewiston, and Jackson Donahue prepare a weather balloon for launch Friday in Livermore. The balloon is full of helium when it can lift four kilograms of payload, Barker said. The flight ended in a tree in Gorham.  Daryn Slover/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

Bates High Altitude Ballooning Club member Max Bartley, a junior from Presque Isle, helps secure the payload to a weather balloon Friday at a field in Livermore. The club, based at the Lewiston college campus, attempted a similar launch one week ago, but the connection failed and the balloon was lost. “A lot of trial and error,” Bartley said. The balloon launch Friday landed in a tree in Gorham. Daryn Slover/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

Bates College junior Jackson Donahue stands Friday in the middle of Perley Field in Livermore holding a weather balloon for over an hour while it was filled with helium. The Bates High Altitude Ballooning Club of Lewiston launched the balloon and tracked it to a tree in Gorham. Daryn Slover/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

Members of the Bates High Altitude Ballooning Club of Lewiston, Matt Clayton, left, Christopher Barker and Loren Andrews, secure the payload of their weather balloon to the parachute shortly before liftoff Friday in Livermore. Pressure at 30,000 feet will cause the balloon to burst and the payload will parachute back down to Earth. It landed in Gorham. Daryn Slover/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

Bates College seniors Tucker Barber, right, and Christopher Barker of the Bates High Altitude Ballooning Club of Lewiston communicate with the Federal Aviation Administration on Friday to get clearance for liftoff of a weather balloon in Livermore. Because the payload is under a certain limit, FAA clearance is not required. Barker, a 2017 graduate of Mt. Blue High School in Farmington, said following FAA protocol is part of the fun. The balloon has a radar reflector so the it appears on FAA radar. Daryn Slover/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

The helium-filled balloon by the Bates High Altitude Ballooning Club of Lewiston lifts off Friday above Perley Field in Livermore with a parachute, the payload and a radar reflector underneath. “We are pretty dedicated to get it back so we will find a way,” Max Bartley said of the odd places the payload may end up. “Matt brought his swim trunks,” Bartley said about junior Matt Clayton. The balloon landed in a tree in Gorham. Daryn Slover/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

Members of the Bates High Altitude Ballooning Club of Lewiston lay back Friday and watch their weather balloon soar above Perley Field in Livermore. A GPS device on board tracked the landing to a tree in Gorham.  Daryn Slover/Sun Journal Buy this Photo


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