3.5 The 242 Mile Connection: How a Raspberry Pi and Stratospheric Exploration Brought Us Together

Monday, 8 January 2018: 3:15 PM
Ballroom C (ACC) (Austin, Texas)
Charles John Peachey, Concord Carlisle Weather Services, Walden Street, MA; and R. Carchia, M. Corcoran, R. Tone, and J. Winstanley

This collaboration between the weather clubs of Concord Carlisle and Morristown-Beard began at the AMS 2017 conference in Seattle. As the only two pre-college chapters we decided we could collaboratively build upon each club’s area of expertise, learning from each other in the process. By adapting Morristown-Beard weather club’s Raspberry Pie computer and sensor package to fly in Concord-Carlisle Weather Service weather balloon payload alongside the Stratostar sensor package, we have a project that will require collaboration between students at both schools with different areas of weather science expertise.

This type of collaboration between students who live 242 miles apart but who have a common interest in weather science will involve multiple in-person visits, clear goal-setting, and an online forum for communication and work. We will have to share our knowledge so that we can make decisions like CCWS students determining the specifications of the payload boxes which would inform the design of the MBWS Rasberry Pie and sensor package, CCWS understanding the MBWS Rasberry Pie and sensor package so CCWS can determine how to get the data and compare it to the other sensor data, and CCWS sharing what the flight conditions are likely to be so that the design of the Rasberry Pie sensor package works under those conditions. Post flight it will be interesting to compare the data from multiple sensors measuring the same atmospheric characteristics.

Beyond the weather balloon launch, collaborating on this project gives us a chance to get to know one another and share other ideas about running a weather club in our schools, future collaborations for AMS, and a chance to experience building that network that is so important for advancing science in the world beyond the classroom. Involving students from both schools in a joint project means that the project also has increased engagement and exposure. The CCWS balloon launch and mission page engages the Concord and Carlisle community and gives them exposure to the MBWS Rasberry Pie, and MBWS students coming up for launch, bringing their instrumentation and spreading the word to the MBS community about their involvement would expand the field of engagement in the launch to include MBS as well.

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