Nonstop circumnavigation of the world by balloon

Bertrand Piccard, a Swiss psychiatrist, and Brian Jones, an English ballooning instructor, accomplished a nonstop circumnavigation of the world in a balloon in 1999. They launched from Chateau-D’Oex, Switzerland on March 1, 1999, but the circumnavigation officially began when the ballon was over Mauritania, in northwestern Africa, (9 degrees 27 minutes west longitude). This was where they grabbed a jet stream eastward across Africa, South Asia, the Pacific Ocean, Central America, and the Atlantic Ocean crossing the finishline above Mauritania, Africa at 6:00 Greenwich Mean Time (4:54 AM Eastern Standard Time), then continued across Africa to Egypt, landing in the desert near Luxor, which was several hundred miles south of the target landing spot near the pyramids of Giza. This flight was sponsored by the Swiss watch manufacturer Breitling, had a ground crew of 13, using computer modelling and satellite communications to direct the balloons flight.

Additional info of Bertrand Piccard:

  • He is the grandson of Auguste Piccard, a pioneer aeronaut and inventor of the pressurized ballon gondola
  • He is the son of Jacques Piccard, a deep-sea explorer.

Date:
      March 1st – 21st 1999
Name(s):
      Bertrand Piccard,
     Brian Jones
Occupation:
      Psychiatrist
     Ballooning instructor
Location:
      Start: Mauritania, in northwestern Africa
      Finish: Mauritania, in northwestern Africa

Craft:
      Breitling Orbiter 3,
      a hybrid helium and hot-air balloon
Size:
      180 feet (55 meters) high when fully inflated
Speed:
      130 miles (209 kilometres) per hour
Time:
      19 days 21 hours 55 minutes
Distance:
      29,055 miles (46,749 kilometres)
Manufacturer:
      Cameron Balloons in Bristol, England



Additional Information:

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