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High altitude balloon to be launched from Hunstanton

PUBLISHED: 07:27 09 October 2015 | UPDATED: 08:25 09 October 2015

Hunstanton high altitude balloon - Photos taken on previous balloon flight: Pictures Bill Robinson

Hunstanton high altitude balloon - Photos taken on previous balloon flight: Pictures Bill Robinson

Bill Robinson 2015

An amazing high altitude balloon is being launched into near space from Hunstanton.

Hunstanton high altitude balloon - Photos taken on previous balloon flight: Pictures Bill RobinsonHunstanton high altitude balloon - Photos taken on previous balloon flight: Pictures Bill Robinson

Filled with helium, the balloon will rise to about 90,000ft, about 27,000m, before exploding and descending to earth.

People will be able to track its flight over Norfolk online and view live images.

The launch is part of a project linked to Cambridge University at Glebe House School in Hunstanton, which aims to encourage pupils to take up computing and other subjects.

The unmanned balloon, with a payload containing a camera and radio transmitter attached to it, will be launched from the school during its open day, at 9.30am tomorrow, and is due to land about midday. Pupils will track and chase it in a mini-bus and then recover the payload and process the photographs from the camera.

The school’s head of computing Bill Robinson said: “The balloon at ground level is about the size of a fridge. At altitude it will expand to the size of a house, before it bursts.

“The payload then begins to fall, a parachute opens and slows its descent, and it glides down to earth.

“It’s predicted by the guys at the university, using up-to-date Met Office data, that it will land near the A11 at Old Buckenham.

“The payload is very light and about the weight of a bird. It’s a polystyrene box, the size of a shoebox.”

Mr Robinson was in charge of a previous balloon flight from Cambridge, which captured fantastic images of near space, Ely, and of Caister looking towards Holland.

You can follow the flight and track the progress of EAGLE1 at

http://tracker.habhub.org and see live images from EAGLE1 at http://ssdv.habhub.org

What innovative project is your school involved in? Email david.bale2@archant.co.uk

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