Clark School Team Breaks Altitude Record

Clark School Team Breaks Altitude Record

Clark School Team Breaks Altitude Record

Officials have declared that a student team based at the University of Maryland's A. James Clark School of Engineering, and including interns from other schools, has broken last year's record for amateur radio high altitude ballooning. The team's super-size helium-filled weather balloon rose up to 128,379 feet before bursting. Last year's record-breaking flight was 125,449 feet by a team from Cornell University.

The Clark School balloon payload, designed and built by students, included a GPS receiver and a radio to regularly transmit the GPS location and altitude of the balloon to a ground station located on the roof of the Comcast Center on the UM campus in College Park.

The Clark School team included Dru Ellsberry (graduate research assistant in the Clark School's Space Systems Lab), Connie Ciarleglio (rising junior in aerospace engineering at the Clark School), Ben Phillips (visiting summer intern from the University of Maryland, Eastern Shore), and Matt Griffith and Dave Thoerig (visiting summer interns from Hagerstown Community College). They were sponsored by the Maryland Space Grant Consortium.

"This team has been together only since the beginning of the summer, working on a number of different projects, but they continue to accomplish significant milestones," said team faculty advisor Mary Bowden. "After this successful altitude record achievement, they will be running part of a summer camp for blind high school students on campus, and then testing & flying a long-duration balloon payload later in the summer."

The flight took place on July 10; the record was confirmed July 13 by Ralph Wallio, who maintains the Amateur Radio High Altitude Ballooning Flight Records website.

The record-setting balloon was released next to the Space Systems Lab on the UM campus and landed just north-west of Fredericksburg, VA

More Information:

Official Competition Results

Space Systems Lab

Clark School of Engineering

Related Articles:
UMD Takes Best in Theme Award at 2022 NASA RASC-AL Competition
Building a Bigger, Better Rocket Team
A New Spin on a Classic da Vinci Design
UMD Team Selected for AFRL University Nanosatellite Program
UMD Team Takes a Top Spot in NASA RASC-AL Design Competition
UMD Student Team Advances in UAS Competition
Engineering Students Twice Victorious at International Rotorcraft Design Competition
Do Good Robotics Start-Up Competition coming this fall
Are you ready to compete in the e-Bike student challenge?
"America's Got Regulatory Science Talent" Competition Call for Participants

July 21, 2009


Prev   Next

Current Headlines

Big Ten Network spotlights Maryland Engineering

UMD’s DeVoe Pioneers New Approach to Liposome Production

Maryland Engineers Graham, Nau, Zhao elected Fellows of AAAS

Prosthetics: A Better Fit

Clark School's Online Engineering Programs Nationally Ranked Top 20

Niemeier Selected for Bower Award

New Sustainable Zinc Battery Design Could Address Future Energy Needs

2023 BBI Seed Grants Inspire New Interdisciplinary Collaborations

News Resources

Return to Newsroom

Search News

Archived News

Events Resources

Events Calendar