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Balloonology: Reading Pibals 2009 BFA Jr. Balloonist Camp

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Reading Pibals Goal:To record, graph and interpret local wind patterns

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Reading Pibals Terms and Definitions (according to dictionary.com): PibalThe measurement and computation of the speed and direction of winds by theodolitic tracking of a pilot balloon. Polar Coordinate System A system of coordinates in which the location of a point is determined by its distance from a fixed point at the center of the coordinate space (called the pole) and by the measurement of the angle formed by a fixed line (the polar axis, corresponding to the x-axis in Cartesian coordinates) and a line from the pole through the given point.

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Reading Pibals Items Needed: –Compass –Pibal –Watch w/second hand –Recording Sheet –Polar Graphing Paper –Pen / pencil Team Needed: –Compass Reader –Time Keeper –Recorder

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Reading Pibals Actions: –Organize a team of three people and assigning roles –Release Pibal –Record compass direction every 20 second on Recording Sheet (count down last 5 seconds each mark) –Graph the recorded direction on Polar Graph paper

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Reading Pibals Completed Graph Example:

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Reading Pibals Discussion: –What challenges were there in tracking the Pibal? –What would effect the rate of rise of the Pibal? –How much does the recorded direction differ from the actual direction?

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Reading Pibals Discussion: –Would the rate of rise effect the direction? –How could you effect the rate of rise? –Would it be possible to determine speed as well as direction?

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Reading Pibals End of Activity!

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