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Weather balloons have CA grad looking up, way up

Tory Carissimo got his start in weather balloons at the bottom.

Now, with several flights behind him, a brand, a nationwide following and a flight scheduled to coincide with the solar eclipse, Carissimo’s hobby, Overlook Horizon High Altitude Balloons, is looking up.

“Yeah, way up,” Carissimo said.

Like, to near space, at 109,000 feet, to a level where the curvature of the Earth can be seen. To where the temperature is so far below zero that when a balloon that reached so high finally landed back on Earth, where the temperature had soared into the 90s that day, it was cold to the touch. To where the Finger Lakes are spots on a photo and a passing airplane is, well, let’s say it’s so tiny that an arrow has to point it out on the photo.

“Just the concept of being able to send something to space or what looks like space, where you see a black sky, and then you get it back down and hold it in your hands,” Carissimo said. “Wow! This thing was just at the end of the planet.”

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