500 mile flight (II)

K. Mark Caviezel

Yes, I am appraised that the 30-40k feet altitude I
mention is 'right in the middle of the jetways', but I
recently read "Around the World in 20 days" by
Bertrand Piccard and Brian Smith, the team that
circumnavigated the Earth in 1999 in a big Rozier
balloon. Most all of thier flight was 15-35k feet
altitude. Yes, air traffic control was an issue
(particularly border crossings), but it was an issue
that they surmounted within the rules of all the
countries they flew over.
The winter winds in general from altitudes 10k feet to
80k feet are good for a flight from here in Denver to
locations east of here, but GPSL is in the summer, and
my knowledge of summer winds over Denver put a cap of
about 50k feet for a balloon wanting to go from here
to there.

The basic issues are:
a). balloon vehicle capable of float, multiple
altitudes desireable (I can do this)
b). telemetry, control, termination. All this has
been done on EOSS flights and "ES-OS" flights.
c). flight prediction/flight management. Similar to
what most balloon groups do for all flights anyways,
with a twist of long time aloft and significant
lateral travel over the ground.
d). "political issues" - FAA, responsible flight
with other users of aerial navigation. Piccard and
Smith did it, manned, in 1999 with a champagne budget,
I'd like to do it, unmanned, in 2002 with a "beer and
pizza" budget.

I am seeking help for those interested in helping on
c). and d). to see if we (the amatuer ballooning
community) can pull this off in a safe and successful

73s all - KMC KC0JHQ

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