It all starts with a little hydrogen and fills up like nearly any other balloon.
"Our weather could become more stagnant or stay the same because nothing will really be changing because these big storms don't move very fast", says Carol Christenson, a Warning Coordination Meteorologist with the National Weather Service. The Topeka station is one of around 60 offices across the country sending extra weather balloons in to the atmosphere. Typically, weather balloon launches occur every twelve hours.
The weather balloon contains instruments that measure temperature, relative humidity, and barometric pressure.
The Island Free Press will continue to monitor Irma and will post updates as soon as they are available. Models that meteorologists have been closely watching have varied each day as to where the landfall will be.
Irma will track through the southern portion of the Bahamas on Friday then nearing the coast of Florida by the weekend.
"It's just a good idea to get prepared as early as you can and make your plans and what you're going to do as far as whether you evacuate or not", Vipond said.
The National Weather service in Topeka is launching a weather balloon every six hours, twice their normal rate.
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