Oral Presentation

High Altitude Thermal Wake Investigation

Authors: Erick Paul Agrimson (St. Catherine University) , James Flaten (University of Minnesota, Twin Cities) , Rachel Hedden (St. Catherine University) , Mara Blish (St. Catherine University) , Amanda Grove (St. Catherine University)

  • High Altitude Thermal Wake Investigation

    Oral Presentation

    High Altitude Thermal Wake Investigation

    Authors: , , , ,


Using various temperature sensors and data loggers, we continue to investigate various thermal effects during high altitude balloon flights. Of particular interest is the thermal wake generated by ascending balloons. During daytime flights the temperature of the air directly beneath the balloon, where payloads typically are located, is warmer than the surrounding air due to solar radiation hitting the balloon which, in turn, warms the air passing close to the balloon that forms the wake. One reference suggests that this thermal effect is only significant within 25 feet of the base of the balloon. We fly a “wake boom” near the top of our payload stack, less than 25 feet from the neck of the balloon, with temperature sensors which extend horizontally from directly below the balloon to outside the predicted width of the wake. We have used different wake boom designs on multiple flights to measure temperature profiles in the wake region.

How to Cite:

Agrimson, E. P. & Flaten, J. & Hedden, R. & Blish, M. & Grove, A., (2013) “High Altitude Thermal Wake Investigation”, Academic High Altitude Conference 2013(1). doi: https://doi.org//ahac.8151



Published on
26 Jun 2013
Peer Reviewed