Sounds rather fun

What if somebody offers you a trip to space in a balloon? The trip is exciting enough for the enthusiasts but can burn a hole in your pocket! Well, the piece of news is that a Chinese firm has developed the country’s very first space parachute suit as part of their business plan. The company offers to send people into space in a high-tech balloon. Don’t worry! They have arrangements to bring you back on Earth as well. A parachute will be used to let you return to your own planet. And guess what? This entire trip will cost you a whopping USD 77,000, which is not a big amount for the richie richs!

But I think I would prefer to be the 2004th person to do this rather than the first.

12 thoughts on “Sounds rather fun”

  1. Didn’t Qinetiq try to do this several years ago?

    I had great fun taking the piss out of them.

    First person in to space without a spaceship? And just to prove we’re British, let’s do it in a hot air* balloon.

    * Of course it wasn’t. Some complex gas thing.

  2. Isn’t this what Felix Baumgardner and Joe Kittinger did?

    Doesn’t it take years of training to, you know, not die?

  3. Not an appealing prospect. Anyway, you don’t need a parachute: just wait for the balloon to burst and then fall back to Earth..all you have to do then is judge the right moment at which to step off before the gondola. Easy.

  4. So Much For Subtlety

    Define space.

    One of the great things about low taxing countries is that the rich have a lot of spare money for a variety of things they can do. Most of which is more socially useful than lesbian bereavement centres.

  5. It is not that daft an idea.

    http://www.jpaerospace.com/

    If memory serves the late Gerard K O’Neill–creator of the idea of “man-made space colonies”– also had the idea for airborne towns . These would be sealed domes containing communities that were pressurised to sea level but would be able to “float” at the top of the atmosphere. The maths apparently work out and they would be ideally placed to use real solar power ie outside most of Earth’s atmosphere. As well as being a halfway hose for space travel/industrialisation.

    So not such a daft idea in itself.

    Whether this present idea is a good one remains to be seen.

  6. So Much For Subtlety

    dearieme – “Space ballooning: sponsored by Dignitas.”

    That could be a good business model. After all, people have their bucket lists. I am sure sky diving features on many of them. This would, so to speak, kill two birds with one stone – and save money on the parachute.

    It would also be an interesting test of the secondary outcome theory – is it acceptable to send someone up if they have a 50% chance of survival? A 5%? Are you actually helping them kill themselves if what they are doing is merely insanely risky and not automatically suicide?

    Mr Ecks – “If memory serves the late Gerard K O’Neill–creator of the idea of “man-made space colonies”– also had the idea for airborne towns .”

    They have been proposed for Venus. Not that we will be trying it ever. But they make even more sense there.

  7. Why would anyone jump out of a perfectly good balloon?

    Uhhh . . . maybe to land on the same continent?

  8. It’s a very daft idea. Jumping out of an aircraft at 500-2,000ft say is one thing, high altitude is another. Jumping from the edge of space is not something you want to be doing unless you really do know precisely what you’re doing.

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