8th grader's science project falls from space, creates confusion

8th grader's science project falls from space, creates confusion


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BEDFORD, N.H. — A middle schooler's science project captured the attention of police on Sunday when a beeping, duct-taped box fell from the sky and landed in a stranger's yard, causing concern.

The box was a homemade weather balloon, created by 8th-grader Jack Miron for an 8th-grade science project. The payload was protected by a styrofoam box wrapped in duct and caution tapes and with a NASA sticker on the side. GPS and a camera allowed Miron and his family to track the weather balloon.

The balloon rose 20 miles — into near space, and enough that it could track the curvature of Earth's atmosphere — a feat Miron was not expecting.

"I didn't know how high it was going to go, but I didn't think it was going to go all the way to the edge of the atmosphere," he told WCVB. "That was just amazing."

At 20 miles, the weather balloon popped and the attached parachute allowed the payload to float back to Earth in safety, where the beeping box landed on a concerned man's driveway 10 miles away in Manchester, N.H.

"To be honest with you, I didn't know what to make of it. I had no idea what I was looking at. I was blown away. That's not something you see every day," Sean Toland told NECN.

Toland called the police, who discovered Miron's contact information in the box. Miron thought the entire event was "hilarious," and Toland was entertained, as well.

"I'm really excited for him. I hope he wins the science project, I really do," Toland said. "I couldn't imagine anyone doing anything better than that."

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Stephanie Grimes

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