The University of Southampton Physics Society Outreach Project:
This year, Southampton University PhySoc decided to engage schools with a science experiment to see their experiments launched into “space”. We launched, with the aid of Cambridge University Spaceflight Society (CUSF) from Churchill college and tracked the balloon throughout the duration of it’s flight.
This project hopes to get students excited about practical science and inspire them to
study Physics at the University of Southampton. The Physoc Outreach team is run by
dedicated Physics undergraduates who are passionate about passing on their
enthusiasm for science.
School children put their experiments into table-tennis balls which were then launched on a balloon with a tracker designed by Matthew Brejza, a member of the Southampton University ASTRA Initiative.
The payload also included cameras loaded with CHDK software to take pictures on the way up. As a group, we saw this as a brilliant time to also launch some of our own personal hobbies up and so a Minecraft “Creeper” and chest were launched.
The balloon burst early due to a bad balloon and reached a maximum altitude of 23km! It then descended and landed in a field where after, quite a lot of searching, we found everything still intact and still taking photos!