Department of Energy Argonne National Laboratory Office of Science NEWTON's Homepage NEWTON's Homepage
NEWTON, Ask A Scientist!
NEWTON Home Page NEWTON Teachers Visit Our Archives Ask A Question How To Ask A Question Question of the Week Our Expert Scientists Volunteer at NEWTON! Frequently Asked Questions Referencing NEWTON About NEWTON About Ask A Scientist Education At Argonne Weather Balloons
Name: Gina
Status: Student
Age: 16
Location: N/A
Country: N/A
Date: N/A 


Question:
Why is a weather balloon never filled completely with He when it is released?



Replies:
Q. What would the weather balloon do when it is released?
A. It would rise.
Q. How does the air pressure at high elevations compare with air pressure at low elevations?
A. Air pressure is lower at high elevations than at low elevations.
Q. What happens to the gas inside a balloon when the air pressure outside the balloon drops?
A. The gas inside the balloon will expand until its pressure is the same as the pressure of the air on the outside.
Q. What if the balloon is already full?
A. If the balloon is closed, it will break; if it is open at the bottom, some of the gas inside will escape, which is a waste.

Richard E. Barrans Jr., Ph.D.
Assistant Director
PG Research Foundation, Darien, Illinois



Click here to return to the Environmental and Earth Science Archives

NEWTON is an electronic community for Science, Math, and Computer Science K-12 Educators, sponsored and operated by Argonne National Laboratory's Educational Programs, Andrew Skipor, Ph.D., Head of Educational Programs.

For assistance with NEWTON contact a System Operator (help@newton.dep.anl.gov), or at Argonne's Educational Programs

NEWTON AND ASK A SCIENTIST
Educational Programs
Building 360
9700 S. Cass Ave.
Argonne, Illinois
60439-4845, USA
Update: June 2012
Weclome To Newton

Argonne National Laboratory