Could You Break the Record for an Around-the-World Balloon Flight?
ES1908  Paths of Polar and Subtropical Jet Streams

The maps below are polar views of the Northern and Southern Hemispheres. They show the general position of jet streams during January and July. Remember that the seasons in the Northern Hemisphere are the opposite of those in the Southern Hemisphere.

  !   Click the buttons to compare the positions of the jet streams during January and July.

Generalized locations of the polar and subtropical jet streams. Northern Hemisphere (left) and Southern Hemisphere (right)

To set an official record, an around-the-world flight must meet certain requirements. Click here to see a summary of the rules for around-the-world balloon flights.

2. Which jet stream(s) offer the best path that meets the rules for an around-the-world flight?

3. During which season do jet streams appear to offer optimal conditions for around-the-world balloon flight attempts?

4. Suggest two reasons why you might not want to use the northern polar jet stream for an around-the-world attempt.


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