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One of the biggest challenges is to keep the burners going in an atmosphere virtually devoid of oxygen. During the last record breaking flight, it is believed the burners flamed out at about 60000 ft. Innovative means need to be devised to overcome this crucial problem. The balloon or better known as the envelope is designed to be about 1.6 million cubic ft. making it one of the largest balloons ever built. This task is being undertaken by Don Camerron the biggest and best-known manufacturer in the world. The sealed capsule that will house the pilot and all his support systems is being designed and manufactured by Andy Elson, the scientist par excellence. The capsule is designed to be cylindrical about 3 meters by 1.5 meters with all safety devices to cater to any unforeseen emergency. The pilot, Dr. Vijaypat Singhania, will be ably assisted by his team of professionals from various disciplines of aviation like Met officers, ATCOs, and the like.

The expected duration to climb to the required altitude would be about 3 hours, and the descent about an hour and a half. The prevailing winds during that time of the year would blow the balloon north-east wards, to a distance of about 100 kms. During the entire flight the balloon would be tracked and assisted by ground controllers at mission control. After a successful landing an elaborate team of ground crew would retrieve the pilot and his equipment from the landing site.

The sealed capsule
The Envelope