The world’s biggest ever hot air balloon is to be built in Bristol.
Russian adventurer Fedor Konyukhov is teaming up with the Bedminster based Cameron Balloons to launch the ambitious project.
The 64-year-old enlisted the help of Cameron Balloons when he successfully broke the record for circumnavigating the globe in a hot air balloon earlier this year.
The adventurer, who is also an orthodox priest in his spare time, broke the world record earlier this year and is now planning to fly a hot air balloon into the stratosphere.
Because the air at 70,000 feet is so thin a balloon capable of lifting Fedor will have to be 30 times the size of a normal craft.
Cameron Balloons is one of the best known balloon manufacturers in the world and played a major part in the launch of the city’s annual fiesta.
Fedor is always looking for a new challenge and his already planning for his ascent.
He said: “I always dreamt of being an astronaut, I became a balloon pilot instead but I still hold the dream of seeing the curve of the planet beneath me and the black sky of the cosmos above.”
The flight is expected to take place in a year’s time provided the organizers can raise the £700,000 (US$ 855.000) needed to fund the expedition.
Don Cameron, the boss of Cameron Balloons, helped to design the balloon which holds the current world record.
He said developments in technology have advanced to such a degree that it is now possible to set a new record.
Fedor is famous around the world for his expeditions over land and sea.
Fedor, who is also a Russian orthodox priest, has climbed Mount Everest, sailed around the world, walked to the North and South poles and last year rowed across the Pacific Ocean to Queensland’s Sunshine Coast.
This summer Fedor completed a new world-record for a solo, non-stop flight around the world. He set a new world record time of 11 days; 5 hrs 32mins, with a distance flown of 32,996km.
Source: The Bristol Post – bristolpost.co.uk