Airbus Perlan Mission II set to fly record breaking heights up to 90,000 feet

slider1-1-1-680x380In June 2016, the Airbus Perlan Mission II is set to attempt its’ record breaking flight in Argentina. The engineless glider’s goal will be to soar up to 90,000 feet – to the edge of space, which will make this flight the highest in history. The engineless glider is designed to sail on ‘stratospheric mountain waves’. Initial trials were successful, with the glider reaching altitudes of 5,000 feet.  In early February, the Daily Mail published an article on the mission. In it, they outlined the goals of the project and how the 90,000 ft flight can ultimately “pave the way for hypersonic planes and aircraft on MARS”. The article briefly outlines the history of The Perlan Project and its founder, Einar Enevoldson, who gathered evidence that mountain waves could extend above the troposphere and well into the stratosphere. A few years after Enevoldson’s findings, Dr. Elizabeth Austin, CCM, of WeatherExtreme Ltd., joined The Perlan Project as lead meteorologist.  Dr. Austin discovered that the Polar Vortex and one of its principal components, the stratospheric polar night jet, could provide the high speed wind in the stratosphere that could power the incredibly high waves to boost the glider to the desired altitudes. Prior to the Airbus Perlan Mission II flight, Steve Fossett and Einar Enevoldson soared the Perlan 1 glider to 50,722ft (15,460 metres) using these ‘stratospheric mountain waves’ in 2006.

Click to view the Daily Mail article