Balloons will again fill the sky above Memorial Stadium at this Saturday's Nebraska game against Arkansas State but this isn't celebrating touchdowns.
It's part of a science experiment students and teachers from Bryan Middle School and McMillan Magnet Middle School are conducting in front of 85,000 witnesses.
The project is a high altitude balloon launch—with scientific experiments as payload—during halftime of the Nebraska versus Arkansas State football game.
The balloons will be released and travel as far as 20 miles high and return safely to earth where the experimenters can see what happened, examine some near-space photos and check their data.
Loaded with Automatic Packet Recording Systems (APRS) transmitters, GPS receivers, cameras and pods encasing atmospheric sensors and other experiments, the nearly 7-foot helium-filled balloons will carry up to 12 pounds of payload. Designing and building experiments to answer scientific questions about the near-space environment is part of the students’ work.
The launch is a collaborative effort among the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, University of Nebraska at Omaha, Omaha Public Schools, Strategic Air and Space Museum, UNL Extension 4-H and the NASA Nebraska Space Grant Office.