The last day of 2013 turned out to be an exciting one for the BARREL team. The Halley team launched Payload 2I at 1144 UT. The balloon reached float altitude of 38 km at 1344 UT. One member of the SANAE team acted as ground station for Halley while the rest of their team set up to launch their first payload. At 1735 UT, the SANAE team launched Payload 2W, with Halley acting as their ground station. The balloon reached float altitude of 38 km at 1930 UT. Both payloads are working nominally and have been transferred to the UCSC MOC. Payload 2T continues to move around the continent, maintaining an altitude above 35 km. Some weak precipitation was observed by it earlier today despite the fact that geomagnetic activity was quite low. We are looking forward to a possible increase in activity in the next few days due to a coronal hole coming into view on the sun. Fingers crossed! We don't anticipate another launch tomorrow. The winds are predicted to be high for the next day or two.
Happy New Year to all of you!