Atlanta students send Coke can into space

6:11 PM, Sep 24, 2013   |    comments
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Southwest Atlanta Christian Academy is known for its more famous alums, such as Dwight Howard and Cee-Lo.

Now, some of its current students -- the members of its science team -- have grabbed the spotlight.

"I play basketball too," says junior Micaiah Henry, "but there's a lot more to a school than that, and we want people to know that, you know?"

Last spring, the science team decided to go big. They decided to launch a can of Coca-Cola into space.

"I really wanted to see the curvature of the earth," said junior Kathryn Glover, "and I wanted to see Earth's atmosphere."

Added Henry, "We made the proposal, we started raising money for it, and we got it done."

After weeks of planning and shopping, the students headed out this past May to launch a tightly-packed weather balloon.

"I'm like, 'Oh my gosh. There goes 1,000 dollars,'" said volunteer adviser Ted Neill. "I hoped we could find it."

But they did not find it. The Coke can floated over the clouds; the attached GPS device stopped working; and the capsule finally landed eighty miles east in Oglethorpe County. It sat there for three months.

And then?

Neill recalls, "I got a call from a professor saying, 'I've found your weather balloon, and I want to return it.'"

Now, the package has been returned. The footage came out just fine. And these students are getting the glory.

The moral of the story? Glover says: "When you really want to do it, and you have a good idea, just go for it.

"Just go for it."

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