Air Force Space and Missile Museum
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Rockets and Weather

Rocketry for Weather Data

Display location: Museum exhibit hall

Successful launching of a rocket has a great dependence upon the weather. Determining current and future weather conditions requires measurements of such things as temperature, wind direction and speed, barometric pressure to name only a few. These measurements must be made not only at ground level, but at many altitude levels as well.

All sorts of instruments are employed to aid meteorologists with their predictions. Balloons carry instrument packages to high altitudes and transmit measurements back to the Cape all along their ascent. It's interesting to note that small rockets, such as the Arcas and Loki, are sometimes used to gather weather data to ensure a successful launch of their bigger brothers.