Flight of the Vulture: 90,000 Feet in a Paper Airplane
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to jump out of a plane from 90,000 feet? I have no desire whatsoever to experience that, but what these Brits did is something else. Instead of them suiting up and jumping out of a plane from that height, they rigged up a paper airplane and let it fall to the earth!
Believe it or not, their scheme actually worked! The guys behind the project – dubbed Operation PARIS (short for Paper Aircraft Released Into Space) – are Steve Daniels, John Oates, and Lester Haines, space enthusiasts all of them. This is no ordinary toy – they shelled out a total of 8,000 GBP to carry out the project. The airplane is made of paper straws and has a wingspan of 3 feet. They hooked it up to a helium balloon, which floated all the way up to 90,000 feet before it popped. (I didn’t know they could go up that high!) They also connected a camera on the plane so that we can all see the view from up there. See for yourself!
This is a pretty impressive feat – not only because it is the first endeavor of its kind, but also because the paper airplane actually made it back to earth in one piece! Who would have thought that something made out of paper can fall 90,000 feet with only a small hole in one of the wings? This is indeed proof of the skill of the guys who started the project just for some silly fun. Now they have gotten worldwide attention, and rumor has it that some Australian dudes are out to beat their feat. Anyone care to challenge them?