We have liftoff

(Edmonton) Students at Kate Chegwin Junior High in Millwoods got a feel for what it takes to launch a space mission with some help from the University of Alberta.

Earlier this week the U of A-based Institute for Space Science, Exploration and Technology organized a weather balloon launch for a Grade 9 class.

The space capsule, a Styrofoam box, carried video cameras and two teddy bear mascots. In its nearly three-hour flight, the capsule reached an altitude of 22 kilometres before the balloon burst. That was high enough for the Grade 9 students to see the curvature of the Earth.

Using GPS locators the balloon was recovered 238 kilometres southeast of Edmonton in a field near the town of Hardisty.

Embedded above is a minute-long version of the launch and flight.