Jet Stream Winds bring Antarctic Weather
I have to launch a balloon this weekend – commercial – UpLift -28. The winds over the eastern states are over 300kph in the jet stream and strangely, they are worse in the Stratosphere. After this one band of strong winds there is another band of strong winds. Luckily for me there is a lull between the bands on Saturday. It is the only day that has a suitable “window” to release a weather balloon flight to the stratosphere and back. We will have a great time helping a group get their balloon in the air and Jason and I will also be recovering the balloon. It will be a great day! In the picture below the current winds are headed from west to east.
It will be a real challenge to get the timing right. It is expected that the forecast will change and we will have to adjust the time of the flight to keep it inside out approved area.
On our return, there will be a great video from the flight which will be all about ART – in this case audio art. The flight will be investigating a range of sounds and will also be looking at Very Low Frequency transmissions as low as below 20KHz. This should be fun.
Primarily the nasty winds are due to Global warming. I wrote a story on this in the past called:
This unusual weather has seen Russian adventurer Fedor Konyukhov lift off from Western Australia on his, hopefully, record breaking flight around the world.
Fedor Konyukhov World Record Balloon Ride Attempt.
This is a hot air balloon with helium cells built into the walls. You can track the flight on this page.
As for UpLift-28, If i had launched today, we would have seen winds so strong that the flight would have ended up in the pacific Ocean even though I am 7-8 hours drive from the coast. The winds have extended from the ground to 35km altitude and maybe more. This is different from normal where the jet stream winds do not influence the winds in the stratosphere and they normally run east to west.
My Saturday flight is a much more relaxed affair: