From CSTART Wiki
 Program Overview
The goal of the CloudLab program is the design and construction of a family of reliable high altitude balloon vehicles capable of carrying payloads to the “near space” environment and permitting easy recovery of these payloads after a non-destructive descent back to Earth. The primary use of the CloudLab vehicles will be to facilitate the testing of technologies for other CSTART programs in realistic environments, e.g.: testing inertial, barometric, horizon sensing and GPS navigation systems, testing parachute deployment systems, testing radio communication systems using realistic distances and atmospheric conditions, etc. A secondary use may be for any space science related experiments which can be performed using the vehicles.