There is so much behind the scenes work done to support or enhance every Perlan 2 flight. Telemetry is a major emphasis for Morgan Sandercock. And you must collect that in flight data through an antenna and wires to computers. 2017 had us eagerly waiting for Morgan's upgrades. He's almost finished and he and Stewart connected the ouside the office to the inside today. In past few days German and members of the Aero Club Lago Argentino have chiseled an opening in the fron wall. There are now very elegant junction boxes on both sides of the wall. Tomorrow we hope for a test flight that will be able to showcase that effort.
Another new support this year is launching a weather balloon each morning of flight. This allows us to build a real skewT comapring winds at altitudes and temperature and humidity. This gives a real sense of what the air is doing around El Calafate. This has been a brand new process for the airport and for us. Elizabeth Tattersall, Loris Gliner, Sandra Sandercock, along with Stewart, Morgan and sometimes Martin Heltai make up the early morning launch crew. The large map sent to us by Investigacion y Desarrollo de la Fuerza Aerea Argentina (Air Force Research and Development) really helps to plot the forecast pathway of the balloon. There's a previous blog about our new weather balloons.