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Seattle space sisters learn lots from eclipse

Loki Lego Launcher
The moon’s shadow can be seen in the background of this picture taken by a camera on the Yeung sisters’ Loki Lego Launcher. A picture of the Yeung family’s late cat, Loki, and a Lego minifigure of Amelia Earhart take up the foreground. (Rebecca and Kimberly Yeung Photo)

Not everything turned out the way pre-teen sisters Rebecca and Kimberly Yeung expected when they sent their Loki Lego Launcher balloon platform into the shadow of a solar eclipse. But that in itself was a big lesson for the stratospheric science team from Seattle.

The Yeung family – including 12-year-old Rebecca and 10-year-old Kimberly as well as their parents, Winston and Jennifer Yeung – drove westward from the launch site in Wyoming after the Aug. 21 eclipse and were due back in Seattle late tonight.

“There are many lessons that we learned, and we are continuing to talk about them as we continue our long drive home (our car ride home always seems to be our mission debrief session),” the girls wrote today on their blog.

The total solar eclipse was a teachable moment for the Yeungs as well as other citizen scientists participating in the Eclipse Ballooning Project.

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By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributing editor at GeekWire, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing. Check out "About Alan Boyle" for more fun facts.

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