Championship Balloon Fest STEM Event

Funding graciously provided courtesy of:

UC Santa Cruz, SCIPP, Quarknet, NSF,

and NASA- Small Satellites for Secondary Students

Check out video of untethered launch: Der Grosste Ballon

April 20, 2013

Hosted by: Tobin James Cellars Map
Paso Robles, CA

Description of Event

Timeline & Supplies

Event Schedule




Flyer for this event

Balloon Fest Preview ppt

Student mentoring and support provided courtesy of various community members, universities, and other professional organizations.


How to Participate

Student Teams


Mentors, Judges, and other Volunteers

Notice of Event Photography:
We will have photographers present (both public media and private) that will be documenting this exciting event. Some of the images, audio, or videos will be published by local media or on the web and may be used for marketing or educational endeavors on behalf of the Endeavour Institute or our sponsors and funders. Your participation acknowledges this and you grant permission to use such recordings and release the Endeavour Institute from any liability for said use.

Check out the
Balloon Fest - Regional

Check out last year's
Balloon Fest - 2012


Suggestions from the Event Judge

Planning the Experiment

Use our website to learn more about the atmosphere and to design exciting experiments:

Atmospheric Research Website

Student Worksheets

Tips on designing

Suggested Experiments

Tips on Planning

How to launch Balloons

Muon Detector Tips
Rise Rate & Bursting Tips

Linear Approx of Pressure/Altitude

Two Station Theodolite:
Procedure Form Program

Resources and Examples

Model documents:
Design, Description, Validation,
, Results, Log, Presentation, & Data (LabPro, graph, text, or Excel)

Examples from the Bearcat Experiment in 2004:
Experiment Design & Procedure, Log, Presentation, & Formal Lab Report

Helium Lift Tables

Plans for:
Line Bobbin
Line Winder
Picovet Gondola

Validated Instruments


Measurement Terms
Instrument Validation Assm
Sensor Charact

How fast does a balloon with a broken tether, rise?

At what altitude will a balloon burst?


Ideas for Additional Research

How accurately can we measure altitude with a barometer?

Which of the Atmospheric models for pressure & temperature does our data best fit?

Can we use the size of a known object on an aerial photo to calculate the altitude?

Suggested Experiments

How much lift is needed?

How much is the barometer pressure reading affected by the dynamic pressure of the wind?

Should the thermometer be shaded?

Previous Balloon Fest Events