Questions tagged [balloons]

Question regarding inflatable spheres filled with material lighter than the surrounding material used to lift objects, and their uses in space exploration.

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2 answers
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Helium balloon as a rocket

This question is not about rockoons, which are rockets using balloons as launch platforms to start from a greater altitude. This question asks about using the balloon itself as the rocket, like a toy ...
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1 vote
0 answers
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Has an aircraft's flight ever been delayed on another planet? If so, who, what, when, where and why exactly?

For the benefit of future readers and our spaceflight-firsts tag: Question: Has an aircraft's flight ever been delayed on another planet? If so, who issued the delay order, what spacecraft's flight ...
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Are there any projects of flying launch pads on high altitude ballons? [duplicate]

It is possible to fly up to 30 km with high altitude balloons. Is it possible to build an island there with launch pad on it? Will it help to fly to space?
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2 votes
1 answer
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How were winds measured for ascent trajectory calculations and checks for the Space Shuttle?

The Space Shuttle's ascent trajectory was calculated on the day of launch based on measured winds to avoid structural load exceedances. The winds continued to be measured until shortly before launch ...
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3 votes
1 answer
246 views

How much fuel could a rocket save by launching from an airship/blimp?

What could the Kozlov’s Aerosmena project blimp add to fuel saving if space rockets were launched from it? Where would you place the rocket and airship on this chart?
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1 vote
0 answers
126 views

Technological challenges to sending a high altitude balloon to space and orbit from 50 km?

Below At what altitude would I have to go in a lighter than air balloon to be above all wind and just have the earth rotate underneath me? there is a comment: If you want to be above all winds, you ...
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3 votes
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How did 20 radio observatories track balloons of the 1985 Venus-Halley (VeGa) mission in Venus' superrotating winds at an altitude of about 54 km?

Links in Phys.org's recent The detection of phosphine in Venus' clouds is a big deal, and here's how we can find out if it really is life lead to: Aerial Platforms for the Scientific Exploration of ...
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11 votes
3 answers
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A balloon in the Venus atmosphere?

Was there any proposal or study for a balloon in the Venus atmosphere? A spacecraft can enter in the atmosphere and inflate a balloon to fly for a few days or weeks. That can help collecting a lot of ...
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3 votes
1 answer
58 views

Upper atmospheric studies in 1930/1940

I understand that during 1930/1940s, Baloons were used to gather high altitude data like "pressure" or "temp." I wonder how the instruments "recorded" their data? E.g. ...
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6 votes
2 answers
436 views

How does gravity vary in a gas giant's interior?

The Earth's gravitational pull in its interior looks like this: The pull remains about the same and increases even a bit till the outer core from where on it starts getting weaker till 0g in the core'...
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5 votes
2 answers
548 views

What would it take for a balloon to reach an altitude of 65 km (214,000 ft) above the Earth's sea level?

Kind of a follow-up question to Could a helium balloon on Mars and on Triton float at air pressures lower than it could on Earth due to the bodies' low gravities?. As stated in the linked question,...
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1 vote
1 answer
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Could a helium balloon on Mars and on Triton float at air pressures lower than it could on Earth due to the bodies' low gravities?

The highest altitude ever reached by a balloon above the Earth's surface is about 33 mi (53 km), unmanned above Japan. The 2nd-highest one reached 51.8 km above California. Both reached the lower ...
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3 votes
0 answers
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What became of slowing down and recovering the falcon 9 upper stage using large balloons

On 16 April 2018, Elon Musk posted on twitter This is gonna sound crazy, but … SpaceX will try to bring rocket upper stage back from orbital velocity using a giant party balloon And then land on a ...
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6 votes
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What specific contributions have ballooning experiments made to manned space flight?

I am vaguely aware that the US space program wasn't just kicked off after Sputnik. There is a history of balloons and sounding rockets that never seem to get mentioned in the books I've read, and ...
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6 votes
3 answers
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Could a balloon or airplane launched rocket get humans into orbit?

There are working systems based on aircraft and balloons which can launch satellites into orbit with the help of a rocket booster. All of these are fairly small payloads. Are there any studies of the ...
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4 votes
1 answer
145 views

Do space agencies (specifically NASA) face legal issues when flying scientific balloons?

I'm doing a project on scientific balloons, and I can't find anything on legal issues that the missions may face. My project consists of a hypothetical mission launching over Antarctica if that helps ...
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7 votes
2 answers
233 views

How to make a camera survive in (near) space?

I'm working on project for a high altitude camera suspended from a weather balloon in order to approximately simulate spaceflight. I'm wondering how can I make a camera survive and continue to operate?...
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2 votes
1 answer
213 views

How long can a high altitude balloon fly before a meteor hits it?

The balloon has a lighter than air gas in it. It flies at 30 km above sea level. It is spherical, with a radius not exceeding five hundred meters. How long can it fly before a meteor pokes a hole in ...
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4 votes
1 answer
139 views

How were the Vega balloons deployed?

The Vega mission included balloon deployment into Venus' atmosphere. Deploying weather balloons on Earth is easy, but i imagine it is quite complicated in other planets' atmosphere from a spaceship. ...
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0 votes
1 answer
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Where is Farside's 4th stage?

This answer has a lot of images that I shouldn't need to repost here, and is supplemental to this answer to the question Help me understand what Farside, a ten “stage” rockoon looked like? How was it ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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High altitude balloon + rocket [duplicate]

I heard that most of a rocket's power is used to get out of the atmosphere. So I was wondering if it would it work to send a very low powered rocket (maybe even something that was simply shot using ...
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3 votes
1 answer
391 views

What is happening with Zero2Infinity and the Bloostar?

I'm reading about the unconventional technology of Zero2Infinity's balloon-launched Bloostar rocket. It looks a bit like a jellyfish shooting through the sky. But it's hard to find much information ...
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3 votes
2 answers
396 views

Maximum height for a Mars Balloon?

The altitude record for an unmanned balloon is 53.0 kilometers. wikipedia If we use this Earth based record for an estimate of the maximum possible height of a balloon started from Mars surface, ...
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7 votes
1 answer
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Why is this rocket transparent, and why is there a nozzle in the nose, pointing up?

The tough question NASA at sIxty years, will there be a new moonshot mandate? links to the NASA YouTube video NASA 60th: How It All Began which shows a lot of really nice, historical file footage and ...
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11 votes
1 answer
883 views

Did Echo 2 remain spherical without requiring gas pressure? If so, how is this known to be true?

Echo 1 and Echo 2 (Project Echo) were giant balloons inflated in space after being launched into Earth orbit, and used to study both the bouncing of radar, TV, and radio signals from one Earth station ...
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1 vote
0 answers
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How to make a rocket than achieve 40 miles in altitude [duplicate]

me and my friend are working on a design where a solid fuel rocket rides on a large weather balloon. The ball on would get 22 miles high before bursting, then the rocket would ignite at boat for 40 ...
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31 votes
4 answers
5k views

When will we send floating probes to Venus?

Recent plans on human missions to Mars have sparked many discussions, one of which is about if we should colonize Venusian upper atmosphere with Zeppelin like floating ships and cities first. NASA ...
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3 votes
2 answers
415 views

Temperatures in "near" space compared to LEO

I've been reading about High Altitude Balloons (HAB) lately, and it seems that they take much greater pains to fight cold temperatures than cubesats do. Loads of insulation, especially on batteries, ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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State of the art balloon materials

What are the state of the art balloon materials used for high altitudes ascending (top of troposphere, approximately 50 km)? Are there new material improvements likely in the next future? If so which ...
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3 votes
2 answers
2k views

Launching a rocket from a weather balloon for a very small payload

I am new to the site and am unaware of the correct formation of my question. That being said, I wanted to know if this is plausable and what would be the correct way of tackling this idea. If I had a ...
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3 votes
3 answers
521 views

At what altitude would I have to go in a lighter than air balloon to be above all wind and just have the earth rotate underneath me?

I know in the lower levels of the stratosphere we can still have 100 mph winds albeit low density winds. Could I possibly go high enough in a balloon or imaginary vertical craft that I would go above ...
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2 votes
1 answer
338 views

What cosmic ray sensor is attached to this Balloon?

This short BBC News item shows a very large high altitude balloon lifting a science payload to measure high energy cosmic rays for about 100 days, circling the Earth perhaps twice in the process. ...
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3 votes
4 answers
1k views

near space vacuum balloon

OK we know that due to air pressure a vacuum balloon would not be possible on earth. But would it be possible to create one that floated near space with almost no air pressure? If so how much ...
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7 votes
2 answers
418 views

Was a commercial (ad) balloon satellite ever deployed?

I remember hearing a story from some two decades ago, about a publicity stunt by one of the two - can't remember which - Pepsi or Coca-Cola. The action was allegedly deployment of a gigantic balloon ...
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5 votes
2 answers
479 views

Building a ultra-small almost space vehicle

I'm quite interested in small rockets-balloons that can reach more than 50km, thus I want to build one myself (With my school financial support). I just want it to carry like a 350g-450g equipment. ...
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1 vote
2 answers
354 views

What technical challenges would be playing this LP in (actual) space?

In the NYTimes article Third Man Records Sends a Vinyl Record Into Space an LP record player was designed and built to be flown in a balloon. It seems to have achieved only about 28.5 km which is ...
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2 votes
1 answer
682 views

Power supply for (30km stratosphere) school's High Altitude Balloon project

Our local amateur radio club has been approached by Veikkola junior school with regard to our members participating in the school's proposed High altitude balloon project (Spring 2017); in particular ...
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15 votes
4 answers
7k views

Current situation with CoCom regulations and GPS receivers for balloons and cubesats

I wanted to ask this at aviation SE because they are quite rules-and-regulations oriented there, but this question is not (really) about aviation. I'm trying to understand the current situation for ...
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1 vote
0 answers
123 views

How practical is a low-cost balloon that stays at 14 km with attitude control, carrying a 1 kg payload? [closed]

How long can a balloon stay at a certain altitude (~14km) and what are the techniques to control the altitude? Are there low-cost ($300) methods to maintain an altitude of 14km for weeks? The foreseen ...
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4 votes
1 answer
982 views

How long would a blimp last in Venusian atmosphere at an altitude of 65 km?

It would be the same blimp on Earth, except with some modifications like anti-corrosion coating. The blimp will use helium as the gas to keep it aloft. Would it last long enough to be useful?
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4 votes
2 answers
893 views

Hydrogen balloon 'rocket' that uses the hydrogen as fuel?

I've had an idea floating in my head recently and would love if someone more knowledgeable with physics or engineering could review it/debunk the idea. There have been many ideas related to using ...
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1 vote
1 answer
2k views

Is it possible to put something small in orbit with a balloon? [duplicate]

I'm wondering if it'd be possible to tape a bottle rocket to one of these chipsat things and carry it to space with a balloon. Once the balloon hits max altitude, the small rocket is ignited and takes ...
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4 votes
1 answer
503 views

Scientifically useful measurements from low-budget high-altitude balloon flights

Let's say, hypothetically, that I'm thinking about launching a high altitude balloon. I want to contribute to the bank of mankinds' knowledge, not just take pretty pictures. My (notional) budget is ...
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26 votes
5 answers
61k views

Is it possible to reach space using home-made rocket?

The first stage would be a high altitude balloon, which could reach 30km. Then start a rocket-candy from that high. Without cargo, is it possible to reach the edge of space (Kármán line - 100km), or ...
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1 vote
1 answer
1k views

Is it possible to put a satellite into geostationary orbit using a weather balloon? [duplicate]

I was wondering about the following situation: First, you send up a balloon with a satellite with some thrusters built-in. As soon as the balloon reaches the geostationary height, it deploys from the ...
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15 votes
3 answers
2k views

Is it more challenging to put an airship in the Uranian than in the Venusian atmosphere?

The Soviet Union's (in cooperation with some European governments like France and West Germany) Vega missions put balloons in the atmosphere of Venus back in 1985. It was 30 years ago, the last ...
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11 votes
3 answers
696 views

How could the proposed floating base in the atmosphere of Venus receive supplies?

I'm a big fan of the floating aerostat concept developed by Geoffrey Landis for colonizing Venus. But how would you supply a floating base? It would be an awfully small target to aim a vessel at. The ...
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36 votes
3 answers
5k views

Is the "airship to orbit" mission profile feasible?

By one of those weird coincidences, I had been on JP Aerospace's site mere hours before reading this question about space dirigibles here. Their mission plan seems too good to be true. They are ...
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2 votes
1 answer
533 views

Has anyone proposed a serious space dirigible design? [closed]

It seems to me that heated helium with syphoned pressure regulated to 1000 mbar or less would get you halfway to the Karman line prior to expenditure of precious fuel. Has anyone thought of this?
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1 vote
2 answers
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What are the uses and limitations of moored (powered) balloons? (Compared to GEO, sounding rockets et c.)

Why aren't moored helium balloons hoovering a few kilometers over many cities as a competing alternative to expensive satellite launches? They could provide services with local advantage such as: high ...
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