We have a house about 25 miles to the west of Flagstaff. My wife was up there last week, while I stayed home with the dogs. She texted me, and sent my a photo of this “strange thing” she found on the property. I said “Cool! A radiosonde!” She brought it back home with her, and when I send it back (it comes with a pre-paid bag to mail it back to be refurbished), I’m going to put a note with it and see if I can get the telemetry it sent - I’d love to know how far it went.
That totally fucking rocks! I wonder if they usually honor those requests? Let us know!
I used to watch the Air Force launch rawinsonde balloons at Edwards. Later, I’d send the data to JSC for the Shuttle flights.
I actually saw one arrive via parachute. I took to the nearest post office for return.
I found one once. I saw it coming down under a parachute. When I got to it, I noticed a rather large battery in a plastic case was leaking a liquid and emitting steam. I removed that before I sent it back.
Another time, while hiking in the desert, I found the remains of a mylar balloon which had a hard plastic cylinder the size of a rolling pin attached to it. There was a data port on the side, about 9 pins if I remember. No return instructions on that one. I kept it for for a few years, but lost track of it after college.
The one I found a couple years ago had a launch information tag and had flown about 80 miles.