Balloon to Fly Tourists to Edge of Space

2020/07/22 16:00

Today's Vocabulary

1. edge (n.) 
the farthest point or outside limit of something

2. float (v.)  
to be on or near the surface of a liquid without sinking; to move slowly in a liquid or the air

3. capsule  (n.)  
the part of a vehicle, typically a spacecraft, in which people travel

4. journey (n.)  
the act of traveling from one place to another, especially over a long distance

5.  eventually (adv.)  
at some point in the future; after a period of time or series of events

Balloon to Fly Tourists to Edge of Space

Two companies, Space Perspective and PriestmanGoode, are working together to make a balloon that will fly passengers to the edge of space.

The balloon, known as Spaceship Neptune, will use hydrogen to float up over 30 kilometers, more than twice as high as a passenger plane. Below the balloon, there’s a capsule with seats for eight passengers and one pilot.

Nigel Goode, Designer and Co-Founder of PriestmanGoode, said that the companies want to make the journey as comfortable as possible for passengers. There’s a bar and a bathroom, plus large windows so passengers can see space and the Earth below. They’ll even be able to share the experience on social media while on board.

The journey will take six hours in total. It will take two hours for the balloon to float to the edge of space, where it will stay for two hours. It will then return to Earth and land in the ocean, where a boat will collect it.

Space Perspective says that it hopes the experience will be as easy as boarding a plane.

The first flights will leave from Space Perspective’s control center in Florida, but there are plans to have more flights from Hawaii, Alaska and possibly other places outside of the US.

The companies hope that the balloon will be used for experiments by scientists and for events like weddings, concerts and business meetings.

The first test flight is planned for early 2021, but won’t include any passengers. The companies hope to eventually offer up to 100 flights per year.



1.What do you imagine it would be like to see the Earth from space?

2.Would you rather travel to the edge of space in a balloon or in a rocket? Why?

3.If you were to write a bucket list, what activities or experiences would you include?

To fly in space is to see the reality of Earth. The experience changed my life and my attitude toward life itself. — Roberta Bondar (Canadian Astronaut). What do you make of this statement?

Roberta Bondar