Tuesday, September 2nd17.1°C
23201
22768

Arizona company successfully tests high-altitude balloon for space tourism

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - An Arizona company says it has successfully completed the first small-scale test flight of a high-altitude balloon and capsule being developed to let tourists float 20 miles above the earth.

World View Enterprises of Tucson said Tuesday that it launched the flight last week from Roswell, New Mexico.

CEO Jane Poynter said the system broke the world record for highest parafoil flight, lifting a payload to 120,000 feet.

"It went really, really, really well," Poynter said. "Actually, the guys hit the ball out of the park. We're thrilled."

The system uses a balloon similar to that used in 2012 to lift Austrian daredevil Felix Baumgartner 128,000 feet to make a world-record breaking 24-mile sky dive. That flight also launched from the Roswell airport.

Poynter said that last week's flight was the first testing all the components together. It used a balloon about third the size of that planned for passenger flight to lift a payload of about one-tenth of what will be used to carry passengers.

The company is still planning to begin its $75,000 per-person flights in 2016, she said. The balloons will lift a capsule carrying six passengers and two crew members 20 miles up, where they will float under a parafoil for about two hours before floating back down to earth. The capsule will be big enough for the passengers to walk around.

The selling point is the view of the Earth and seeing its curve, the company says. Other space-tourism ventures under development will rocket passengers the full 62 miles into space but on much shorter flights.

In filings with the Federal Aviation Administration, World View said it planned to launch its flights from Spaceport America in New Mexico. But Poynter Tuesday said that no final decision has been made on where to base the flights.

Spaceport is where Virgin Galactic plans to launch its first space-tourism flights at a cost of $200,000 per person. Development of Virgin's spacecraft has taken longer than originally planned, and it is unclear when the company, founded by British billionaire Richard Branson, will make its first flight. The company's newest target date is the end of this year, but it has said that for each of the last several years.

"I don't think anyone anyone considers us in a race," Poynter said when asked if they might beat Virgin Galactic to passenger flight. "We don't consider us in competition because the experience is so completely different."

___

Follow Jeri Clausing at http://twitter.com/jericlausing

The Canadian Press


Read more Business News

20759


Recent Trending




Today's Market
S&P TSX15606.88-18.851
S&P CDNX1012.98-11.01
DJIA17053.24-45.21
Nasdaq4591.031+10.759
S&P 5002000.27-3.10
CDN Dollar0.9157-0.0037
Gold1287.40-3.30
Oil95.96+1.29
Lumber350.40+2.00
Natural Gas4.116+0.014

 
Okanagan Companies
Pacific Safety0.20+0.005
Knighthawk0.01-0.005
QHR Technologies Inc1.18-0.01
Cantex0.08+0.01
Anavex Life Sciences0.2425-0.0075
Metalex Ventures0.07-0.005
Russel Metals36.44-0.04
Copper Mountain Mining2.91-0.02
Colorado Resources0.165-0.015
ReliaBrand Inc0.0801-0.0199
Sunrise Resources Ltd0.0250.00
Mission Ready Services0.225-0.02

 



22819

FEATURED Property
187478114752 Oyama Road, Lake Country, BC
5 bedrooms 5 baths
$1,999,000
more details
image2image2image2
Click here to feature your property
Please wait... loading


Manage your behaviour

You can’t manage what you can’t control! You can’t manage the number of sales you’re going to make but you can manage the behaviour that will help you make those sales. Obvious...


At the Core: Lessons in pricing from Apple

Apple has taught many entrepreneurs the importance of design, how to create buzz when introducing new products to the marketplace, how to pioneer new technology and the importance of superior quality....


New Real Estate Brokerage in town

Move over “big guys” there’s a new brokerage in town featuring local expertise, long standing experience and a fresh boutique approach. Kelowna, August 31 2014 – You may have...

_





22692


Member of BC Press Council