The mobile phone and camera, which are typical items in homes worldwide, survived 160 kmph winds, temperatures of minus 60 degrees Celsius and a descent speed of 240 kmph.
Luke Geissbuhler, 40, and his seven-year-old son Max, designed a “craft” out of a takeaway box attached to a weather balloon and sent it, and the two electronic devices, into space, reports the Daily Mail.
After months of research and testing, the amateur scientists launched their innovative weather balloon in Newburgh, New York. During a 102-minute flight it managed to reach an altitude of more than 30 km in the upper stratosphere before the balloon burst and parachuted the craft back down to earth.
Tracking with GPS
Geissbuhler tracked the module, which was caught in a tree, by using the GPS system set up on the iPhone and spotted its flashing LED light. Amazingly, it touched down 30 miles north of the launch site. The cinematographer and director said he got the idea for the project because he is always looking for fun ideas to share with his son.
He said: “Max and I work on all sorts of fun projects together. But even after months of research and testing — we only had a 30 per cent chance it would work. We got very lucky.”
Geissbuhler said: “When we watched the first footage, we thought if we just see black we are going to freak. We were totally out of our minds when we saw the footage. It was more than we were even hoping for.”
A seven-minute film chronicling the endeavour was uploaded to www.brooklynspaceprogram.org, where it has created a stir among web bloggers.