Student Balloon Blasts Off Near Space

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EDWARDSVILLE, MO (KTVI) - There were a lot of last minute pre-flight checks Tuesday morning at Columbus Elementary School. This was the second time the grade school has gone where most grade schools have never gone before, and this time they had some help from Southern Illinois University.

"SIU purchased a data logger and that data logger is hopefully measuring air pressure, relative humidity and temperature." said Columbus Elementary Principal Vince Schlueter.

That data logger will send students readings every five seconds. The cooler capsule has a high definition camera to record it's journey.

You might remember two years ago the students sent this weather balloon into near space. Now kids from K through 12 joined together as simultaneous launches happened here and at Edwardsville High School.

"When you read about things just something in a book but now they have actually touched things that have been to the edge of space.  They've seen the instruments we're using and it's something partial to them and now when they read about the ozone and fossil fuels it has a real application to them." said  fifth grade teacher Rob Canada.

Some have a different perspective on their second chance at space.

"I'm learning how the weather can change as it goes higher" said Fifth Grader Mackenzie Kimble.

Knowledge is a powerful tool that can come in handy when you're trying to get your cooler off the ground.