1902 Encyclopedia > Aeronautics > Balloon Ascents of Mr Welsh

(Part 28)

Balloon Ascents of Mr Welsh

In July 1852 the committee of the Kew Observatory resolved to institute a series of balloon ascents, with the view of investigating such meteorological and physical phenomena as require the presence of an observer at a great height in the atmosphere. Mr. Welsh, of the Kew Observatory, was the observer, and Mr. Green's great Nassau balloon was employed, Mr. Green himself being the aeronaut. Four ascents were made in 1852, viz., on August 17, August 26, October 31, and November 10, when the respective heights of 19,510, 19,000, 12,640, and 22,930 feet were attained. A siphon barometer, dry and wet bulb thermometers, aspirated and free, and a Regnault's hygrometer were taken up. Some air collected at a considerable height was found on analysis not to differ appreciably in its composition from air collected near the ground. The original observations are printed in extenso in the Philosophical Transactions for 1853, pp. 311-346. The lowest temperatures met with in the four ascents were respectively 8°.7 Fahr. (19,380); 12°.4 Fahr. (18,370); 16°.4 Fahr. (12,640); - 10°.5 Fahr. (22,370); the decline of temperature being very regular.

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