Joined: 07 Nov 2006
|Posted: Tue Nov 07, 2006 1:24 am Post subject: Ballooning
|In the past people used to travel using balloons
And it's still used to be an entertainment method in holidays to have a great look from up
Here you are some info about ballooning :
The first kind of air transportation was not a plane. It was a balloon. People traveled by balloon 100 years before there were planes or jet aircraft. Those early days of ballooning were exciting, but they were also dangerous. Sometimes the balloons fell suddenly. Sometimes they burned. However, the danger did not stop the balloonists.
The first real balloon flight was in France in 1783. Two Frenchmen, the Montgolfier brothers, made a balloon. They filled a very large paper bag with hot air. Hot air is lighter than cold air, so it goes up. The Montgolfiers' hot air balloon went up 1,000 feet in the sky.
Later that same year, two other Frenchmen ascended in a basket under a balloon. They built a fire under the balloon to make the air hot. This made the balloon stay up in the air for a few hours. But their balloon was tied to the ground. So it could not go anywhere.
The first free balloon flight was in December, 1783. The balloon flew for 25 minutes over Paris. It traveled about 5 1/2 miles. Flying a balloon is not like flying a plane. The balloon has no engine and therefore no power of its own. The wind directs the balloon. It goes where the wind blows. The pilot can control only the altitude of the balloon. He or she can raise and lower the balloon to find the right wind direction. That is how a good pilot controls where the balloon goes.
Soon balloonists tried longer flights. A major event in the history of ballooning was the first long flight over water. In 1785, an American and a Frenchman flew over the English Channel. They left England on a cold, clear January day. After about an hour, their balloon began to descend toward the water. They threw out some equipment and food to make the balloon lighter. The balloon continued to fall, so they threw out almost everything in the basketeven some of their clothes. Finally, after about three hours, they landed in France, cold but safe.
During the nineteenth century, ballooning became a popular sport. There were balloon races in Europe. Balloons were also used by scientists to study the air and by armies in wartime. After the airplane was invented, people lost interest in balloons. Planes were much faster and easier to control. But some people today still like to go up in balloons. High up in the balloon basket, they find quiet. They have a wonderful view of the world below.