Top 10 pics of Earth taken from high altitude balloons

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Designed to study the Earth’s upper atmosphere, high altitude balloons used to be the sole purview of research scientists. Today, thousands of DIYer enthusiasts are also building their own high altitude balloons and fitting them with attachable cameras to produce hundreds of stunning images of Earth from space.

High altitude ballooning dates back to the 1890s, and has lead to numerous scientific discoveries. Chief among these discoveries is the work of French meteorologist Leon Teisserenc de Bort, who was among the first to confirm that our atmosphere consists of two layers, tropopause (the lower portion of the Earth’s atmosphere) and the stratosphere. Another important discovery thanks to high altitude ballooning is Earth’s Van Allen belts, whose high levels of radiation can damage the onboard sensors and computer components of spacecraft.

Filled with helium, high altitude balloons can reach as high as 90,000 feet and are usually made out of latex, “which is a natural substance found in many plants.”

Here are some of the most breathtaking images of Earth taken from high altitude balloons:

1.

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Image Source: http://imgur.com/SrrJFZy

2. 

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Image source: http://imgur.com/pdFpZMv

3.

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Image source: Commons

4. 

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Image source: http://goo.gl/vjJtRN

5.

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Image source: Commons

6. 

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Image source: Commons

7. 

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Image source: http://goo.gl/K81PB2

8.

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Image source: http://goo.gl/J0YYOp

9.

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Image source: http://upintheskyproject.com

10.

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Image source: http://upintheskyproject.com

About Author

Kristian strives to enlighten and entertain readers. In addition to his teaching and editorial responsibilities, he is working on a science-fiction novel that promises not to include exoskeleton suits and anemic aliens floating in mysterious vats of green-tinted goop.

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