COSI Launch, Light Show

COSI launched today, which means that SPIDER is coming up next. Unlike the usual zero-pressure balloons that are open at the bottom, they use a special pressurized balloon with a heavy valve plate on top to regulate pressure and avoid popping. This requires a smaller tow balloon to lift up the main balloon for inflation. A little over a week ago, they had a very unfortunate scrubbed launch after their fancy million-dollar balloon was out of the box and the tow balloon fully inflated. Due to extremely dense fog, that part of the process was invisible this morning, but the fog cleared up in time for us to see the launch. The lingering fog resulted in some spectacular light displays.

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