Father and Son Launch an iPhone into Space
byon 02-15-2011 at 01:00 PM (1769 Views)
Working on a relatively minuscule budget compared to most government-funded space exploration projects, a father-and-son team from New York recently launched a digital camera and iPhone into space. Amazingly, they were not only successful, they captured the whole thing on video.
The special package they created to store and protect their equipment fit into a foam-padded probe about the size of a football, which was then fitted with a homemade parachute and attached to a small helium-filled weather balloon. The balloon was then only partially filled so that it could expand as it climbed toward the upper atmosphere. Once the balloon reached about 100,000 feet, it burst, sending the probe hurtling back to Earth at about 150mph. And that's with the parachute deployed!
The team (mostly the grown-up half) worked for eight months researching the project before launch. The iPhone was included in the payload primarily for its GPS tracking capability, which would allow the team to locate their space pod once it returned to earth. Surprisingly, the one-time launch was a complete success, and the team found their space probe intact, only 30 miles north of the liftoff site!
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Check out the video below to see how it all went down.
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