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The Powered Balloon System
Scientific interim rept.
AIR FORCE CAMBRIDGE RESEARCH LABS HANSCOM AFB MA
Pagination or Media Count:
The concept, present status and basic problems involved in developing a powered station-keeping balloon with moderate payload capability approx. 200 pounds are outlined. The POBAL balloon will float in the seasonal minimum wind fields 60,000-90,000 feet. By supplying enough thrust to overcome the wind- drag forces, the balloon will be kept hovering above a designated location for a duration limited by its fuel supply. The feasibility, choice of balloon design, predicted durations for candidate propulsion methods and other pertinent considerations are discussed. A demonstration flight system using available system components is described. The eventual POBAL capability is contrasted with that of drones and several immediate applications for an operational POBAL system are described.
APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE