The Rapsberry Pi is an impressive mini-computer we saw launch recently, and it's already won the hearts of many. An individual from the UK named Dave Akerman was apparently looking to have a real adventure with his new Pi, so he strapped the gadget to a weather balloon for it to be sent up into Earth's atmosphere to take pictures from near-space. And it actually did quite well. The photos can be viewed on Akerman's Flickr account.
Akerman saw that the Pi had had a USB port offering fast and easy access to a webcam, so he could obtain live images sent down to him from the payload. Dubbed the “Raspberry Pi In The Sky” project, the weather balloon reached about 40 kilometers before bursting, which is not bad since most balloons carrying small loads like tracking devices or sensors for temperature and pressure can reach altitudes of about 30 kilometers or so.
Akerman admitted that there were a lot of challenges faced along the way, including the obviously harsh environment from reaching near-space, which has less than one percent atmosphere with temperatures dropping down to -50 degrees Celsius. The Pi itself also had its own set of challenges to work with, which included an SD card, power requirements and operating system.
You can check out Akerman’s launch video below and his blog post here.