Local hams reach for the sky - KiiiTV.com South Texas, Corpus Christi, Coastal Bend

Local hams reach for the sky

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Amateur radio enthusiasts in Beaumont Saturday looked to the sky as they launched a "Near Space Balloon"

The Beaumont Amateur Radio Club hosted the event with preparations beginning at 8 a.m.  The actual launch was just before 10 a.m. at the Beaumont Municipal Airport.

This is the third balloon launch by a group of hams known locally as B.O.S.S (Balloons Over Southeast Texas Space). The purpose of the project is to bring attention to and promote Amateur Radio by showing different aspects of the hobby.

The balloon carried the largest payload the group has sent up so far. The payload included an amateur radio location package that gave followers the GPS coordinates with altitude, temperature and other vital information about the balloon.

The balloon also carried a video camera that sent back live footage with sound to the ground team.

Organizers say the balloon reached an altitude of 93,772 feet and made landfall in Plumb Grove in Liberty County, about 70 miles north-west of its launch point.