NC balloon reaches heavens, shoots photos of space

RALEIGH, NC (AP) - A North Carolina team's homemade balloon soared to an estimated 80,000 feet and sent back photos of Earth before landing in a tree.

The News & Observer of Raleigh reported Tuesday that Team TechShop launched a balloon from north Raleigh's Horseshoe Farm Park on Sunday morning. The balloon took dozens of photos of the Earth's horizon and the blackness of space before it landed in a tree in Rocky Mount.

The launch was part of a national ballooning contest that challenges teams to build and send a homemade balloon into near space. The team's first attempt made it to 20,000 feet before disappearing.

Even though the team was out of the contest, it built the second more successful balloon from spare parts and sent it up "just-for-kicks."

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