Like many youngsters, and those young at heart, seven-year-old Max Geissbuhler and his dad dreamed of visiting space -- and armed with just a weather balloon, a video camera, and an iPhone, in a way they did just that.
The father-and-son team from Brooklyn managed to send their homemade spacecraft up nearly 19 miles, high into the stratosphere, bringing back perhaps the most impressive amateur space footage ever.
The duo housed the video camera, iPhone, and GPS equipment in a specially designed insulated casing, along with some hand-warmers and a note from Max requesting its safe return from whomever may find it after making it back to solid ground. All told, father and son spent eight months preparing for their homemade journey into space, in hopes of filming "the blackness beyond our earth."
Then, one day in August, Max and his father headed out to a nearby park to see their dreams realized. After attaching their equipment to a 19-inch weather balloon and switching on the camera, they watched as their simple craft disappeared high into the sky.
After a little over an hour, the craft reached the stratosphere, 100 thousand feet overhead, and captured some incredible footage of space before the balloon popped and fell back towards earth. They found their spacecraft 25 miles away from where they had let it go -- stuck up in a tree.
Although the camera's battery died some minutes before touching down, the footage the camera returned is impressive. And despite the fact that the craft didn't technically reach the boundaries of space, Max and his father are undoubtedly proud of their accomplishment.
Here's their extraordinary video.