Hot-air Balloon Wind Sensing

Hot-air Balloon with a payload of instruments is taking off.
Hot-air Balloon with a payload of instruments takes off upwind of the Cabauw observatory
EIF de Bruijn

This PhD thesis is about the application of a hot-air balloon (HAB) as a potential source of additional wind data in the lower 1 km of the atmosphere. Flights from the archives of balloonists were studied and interesting wind pattern were found which were explained with respect to their meteorological background. The motion of a HAB was studied as well as the balloon's inertia after a changing wind. A field experiment was conducted to collect data using a smartphone app, which was used to determine the HAB-derived wind data. A first check of the latter with the 213 m high Cabauw meteorological tower data gave positive results. Next, the dynamics of a HAB was investigated using the data of an accurate windmeter under the balloon basket. Subsequently, verification and impact studies with two weather forecast models were carried out to demonstrate the usefulness of the HAB wind data.



Bibliographic data

EIF de Bruijn. Hot-air Balloon Wind Sensing
Year: 2023, Other information:

available from Wageningen University

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