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World View balloon makes unplanned landing

Posted at 5:00 PM, Oct 06, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-07 13:47:43-04

TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — A World View balloon that was deployed earlier today as part of their continued test program for a remote sensing system made an unplanned landing Wednesday in Tucson.

The company says it was testing the new systems when the balloon landed sooner than planned.

World View tells KGUN 9 the system is unrelated to the equipment it plans to use for space tourism and did not describe the event as a crash, but rather a controlled descent with a shorter flight than planned. The balloon landing used the sort of fabric parafoil wing it normally employs to glide in for a landing.

"The flight was terminated earlier than planned but there was no balloon crash. It was a normal termination of a flight where the balloon came down on parafoil as standard practice. This was not a part of the space tourism business recently announced so no humans were on board. This was the first time the new system was being evaluated, which proved successful for launch and ascension testing but not for a long-duration flight. Like all companies, testing and validation is a critical component of the development process. The feedback from today's test flight will provide valuable data to help inform and improve future iterations."
Ryan Hartman

World View says though the flight ended prematurely, it did land in the location planned for it, and has already been recovered.