Night 8, A long awaited balloon

Not only a daily update this time, but also a nightly update. The TWIN balloon was launched at 05:21:40 this morning. The TWIN balloon is one of two balloons taking part in a balloon launch campaign here at Esrange. Since January the launch had been rescheduled multiple times due to weather conditions, but tonight it finally lifted off.

The balloons that are launched from Esrange are filled with more than 150 000 m3 helium and can reach altitudes of about 30 km. They are launched from the balloon platform, which is basically a huge plane of snow and ice. Before the launch first a small weather balloon is launched to determine the wind profile at different altitudes. The balloons are filled with helium at the balloon platform. When the balloon has been filled it is released and it slowly lifts to the sky. After a couple of hours the payload is released, which then falls to the ground on a parachute. It is recoverd by helicopter.

Launch of the TWIN balloon