Father and Son Film Outer Space, Do-It-Yourself-Style. . .


Wonder what the FAA thinks?


Like many youngsters, and those young at heart, seven-year-old Max Geissbuhler and his dad dreamed of visiting space – and armed with just a weather balloon, a video camera, and an iPhone, in a way they did just that.


I believe I have looked into this before. Below a certain size payload and balloon, the FAA requires no notification. Very reassuring when flying around in the ol Cherokee.


(a) It’s been done before.

(b) It looks like FAR 101 has several things to say about balloons with a payload over 4 lb. tinyurl.com/d2w2px
But under 4 lb is no problem. Because as we all know, anyone whose plane can’t take a shot from a 3.9 lb camera box at 400 knots is a wussy anyway. 8) :wink:
(Jason, how much do you think your goose weighed?)
Kinda gives you pause, doesn’t it? Let’s hope the citizen space balloon movement doesn’t ever get too popular, and the skies remain large.


I wonder about the ATC aspect though. Class A airspace specifically. I used to help crew for hot air balloons when I was a kid. The aircraft were all registered aircraft with tail numbers. We had one though that was an “ultralight” balloon. Without Google=ing I can’t find the specifics, but It was a 2 place basket and had a much smaller envelope than the “4 place”. I think, like ultralight aircraft, he didn’t have to have it registered with an N number (and I might be talking out the back…).
We would under a class C ring (which was actually either an ARSA or TRSA back then) in KCMI’s airspace, and before they could enter it they had to call . Usually this was a call to tower on the phone with the launch spot and probable flight path but they knew where we were.

A. would an aircraft like the one in this video , albeit small, have to get permission to enter class D or C ?

B. what about entering class B?


I believe here we are talking about weather type balloons, no persons on board just a small cargo package. If that package is small (less than four lbs I think), you don’t have to say anything to anyone, just let it go. That would include penetrating Class A airspace. Still a reassuring thought isn’t it…