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© Sébastien CHASTANET / CNES / OMP / IRAP / UT3 / CNRS Photothèque
The CLIMAT science and engineering team, prior to lift-off from the Alice Springs balloon launch base. The CLIMAT mission ( Combination of Lasers and Instruments for in situ Measurement of the Atmosphere of Earth) concerns a group of experiments by French and European laboratories aimed at furthering research into atmospheric physics and chemistry. CLIMAT is a 240kg gondola, carried under a 150,000 cu. m balloon to a ceiling altitude of 33 km. For example, its 2015 flight enabled scientists to identify a 10% increase in methane in columns between 0 km and 15 km between 2000 and 2015; this important finding was subsequently reported at the COP21 climate conference.