Off Topic – Huge Sky Balloon To Lift 150 Ton GearSo cruising the news today for USB updates, I stumbled upon this article about an Australian company dreaming up a giant sky balloon to carry stuff. When you need to get heavy gear into remote places a road can’t always get you there.Â Sometimes the gear is so large, air lifting it in wont get you there either.Â So what to do?Â How about a ginormous sky balloon?
To give you an idea of the type of problem this Australian company [Skylifter] is trying to solve; a helicopter is the only aircraft which can float in a product of great size or weight to a remote location – but it’s got limitations.Â A helicopter can only carry about 50 tons of gear.Â What if the stuff weighs more than 50 tons? The balloon is 150-meters wide and could carry up to 150 tons.Â The balloon would have a flight range of 1240 miles and would act like a parachute on decent to make a gentle touchdown. A mini RC version of the balloon is now being tested and is 9 feet across. It can carry about 1 pound with a full-size prototype set to start building in the coming three years.