I just love The Big Picture at Boston.com – they’ve just released a set of photos that were taken at 30,000 feet during an experiment by Spanish students.
On February 28th, a team of four Spanish teenage students and their instructor from IES La Bisbal school in Catalonia launched a weather probe they designed and built themselves. Their helium-filled balloon carried a payload of electronics and a camera to take atmospheric measurements and photographs throughout the trip. After getting permission from aviation officials and getting good weather, they released the probe on a trip that took it over 30,000 meters (19 miles) above sea level, through winds gusting up to 100 kph, and temperatures reaching -54C (-65.2F), and traveling 38 kilometers overland in a time of 2 hours and 10 minutes. The Meteotek08 team has collected their images and data on both their blog and flickr page, and has kindly given me permission to share these photos here with you. (28 photos total) – source Boston.com
I picked up from the comments that there have been a couple other occurrances too of students sending cameras up with baloons to take pictures from above.
Pictures taken with a Pentax k10d from a high-altitude sounding balloon. Experiment conducted by Oklahoma State University while testing a new cosmic radiation detector.
The Best of Borealis page also has a number of great photos taken from above.