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Vincent Levrat Captures the Daily Flight of Devices That Measure Weather Patterns

Posted by on February 22, 2018 | Student Photography

A lot of attention was given to SpaceX and its CEO Elon Musk when the company successfully launched a rocket containing a Tesla roadster into space on February 6. Much less fanfare is given to radiosondes, which are battery-powered devices attached to balloons that are launched above the earth daily, at heights of 65,000 feet, to measure shifting weather patterns. There are roughly 1,300 radiosonde sites around the world.

These less well know, but vital devices are the subjects of “Catch Me If You Can,” a series by Vincent Levrat, a photography student currently working towards his BFA at the École cantonale d’art de Lausanne. Specifically, Levrat focuses on the people who launch the radiosondes, and then must find them, sometimes hundreds of kilometers from where they were launched, when the balloons that carry them pop.

“Radio waves allow, with the help of DIY technology, a small community of elderly geeks to track and locate the probe in an always exciting hunt,” he says.

A selection of images from the series is below. All photographs © Vincent Levrat.