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Watching Endeavour From a Balloon at The Edge of Space – UPDATE

By Keith Cowing
May 16, 2011
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Endeavour’s Final Launch Inspires Hands-on Public Engagement: High Altitude Balloon Mission
“The helium-filled balloon carrying the “Senatobia-1″ payload will be launched from the vicinity of Gainesville, Florida. The expected balloon launch time is on Monday, 16 May between 7:30 to 7:45 am EDT. This will allow the balloon and its payload to be in position at an altitude of approximately 100,000 feet for Endeavour’s supersonic transit of the stratosphere beginning with a planned liftoff at 8:56 am EDT. If there is a delay in the launch of Endeavour the Quest for Stars team is ready to try again – several times – on subsequent days.”
Keith’s note: If all goes according to plan we will have live video from the balloon as Senatobia-1 ascends to catch Endeavour. Video feeds and tracking links here. Launch site feed begins at 7:15 am EDT. This is the projected flight path.
Keith’s note: On board today are photos of Baruch Blumberg and Bob Clark. Launch is now planned for 7:39 am EDT.
Keith’s note: The balloon has been launched. Track its progresss live at http://twitter.com/questforstars or http://www.questforstars.com
Keith’s note: The balloon burst at 95,000 ft – very close to target altitude of 100,000 ft – and the payload is now parachuting nominally toward landing.

NASA Watch founder, Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA, Away Teams, Journalist, Space & Astrobiology, Lapsed climber.