Balloons after decades of almost complete oblivion gradually returning to our lives. And it’s not just about entertainment and sports aircraft, but also of their industrial and scientific use.In this review, we collected 5 most visible examples of how the modern world used balloons , as well as the directions in which they can be useful in the future.
Launch of iPhone 5S in the sky with the help of balloons
A group of students, technicians from Boston dreams of private space exploration. Of course, they do not have the billions of dollars that could be made as an investment in the development of appropriate technologies, as do businessmen Elon Musk and Richard Branson, consequently, the extent of their activities much more modest. However, they can already boast several successful launches of aircraft at high altitude.
For example, in 2014, students made several launches smartphone iPhone 5S using balloons. They attached a mobile phone with a camera is turned on to balloons and let them go. Balls up to a height of 29 kilometers, where the burst, torn inside high in comparison with the outside, the pressure. Fallen phone they then found thanks to the included sensor GPS.
Bloostar – orbiting satellites in balloons
Ideologically linked to the manipulation of Boston students and it is “serious” project called Bloostar from Spanish company Zero2Infinity. It implies launch into orbit around the Earth with the help of balloons.
Of course, the creators project Bloostar understand that due to the increasing with each subsequent kilometer climb pressure difference inside and outside the balloon, balloons can not rise to the level of 100 km or more. However, this is not necessary. The project involves the use of balloons to spacecraft overcome gravity.
The balloons will lift them to a height of 20 kilometers, then the unit will separate and fly on their own, using the traditional step-missile system. This technology will greatly save resources when the satellite is in orbit, because most of the fuel is consumed missiles at the start, at the time of separation from the earth’s surface.
Bloostar technology allows you to run up to a height of 600 kilometers objects weighing up to 75 kilograms.
Bloon – tourist ballooning to extra-large height
Another promising project of the Spanish company Zero2Infinity. As part of the technical initiatives it plans to create balloons with attached a sealed capsule, designed for four people.
Bloon balloons will rise to a height of 40 kilometers. This indicator is, of course, far away, even to the level of suborbital flights that take place in the mark of 100 km. However, this height will be enough for passengers to feel the closeness of the Cosmos, and myself – almost real astronauts.
After rising to a maximum height of Zero2Infinity balloons can stay on it for three hours (compared to a few minutes when flying on the shuttle from Virgin Galactic), and then another smoothly descend to the surface of the Earth for five to six hours. Thus he rise will occur in the mode of the balloon and the descent – in the mode of the glider.
During the flight, passengers will be able to admire the amazing beauty of the planet Earth, and these species can not be observed even with the board an aircraft during a transcontinental flight, because the device Bloon rise four times higher. In this case, the cost of this trip will be a couple of tens of thousands of dollars. For comparison, the prices of flights with Virgin Galactic will start from 250 thousand.
COSI Balloon – a new generation of scientific balloons from NASA
In late 2014, a group of scientists and engineers from NASA to McMurdo Station in Antarctica launched the first instance of a new generation of balloons, scientific balloon with mksimalnym volume of 538,000 cubic meters.
It is expected that this kind of balloons will form the basis for research in the coming decades. After all, they can lift a weight of 2,300 pounds to a height of 33 kilometers. This balloon can constantly be in the sky for about a hundred days, despite the fact that modern record maximum flight duration is 55 days.
The first scientific balloon new generation raised to the height of the gamma-ray telescope COSI, which is able to detect in the sky station, emitting gamma rays, the study of which will solve a huge amount of cosmic secrets.
Pont de Singe – suspension bridge at three balloons
As conceived by renowned designer Olivier Grosseteta forces balloons is enough for you to keep a small footbridge, spread over small lake in a park with an estate in north-west England.
Pont de Singe or “Monkey Bridge” – is one of the most unusual bridges in the world. After all, he kept above water by means of massive foundations, but only at the expense of three large balloons attached to the structure. At the same time that the bridge does not fall, it is fixed to the ground with a few tied sandbags. True, Pont de Singe – it is only a decorative feature of the park. No practical function it does not perform. Rickety structure is not designed to go over it people – he immediately goes under the water under the weight of their bodies.
Bridge Pont de Singe is in the so-called “Japanese” of the English manor park. This design, according to the author, seeks to revive poetry and dreams in the turmoil of modern life.