Airships: A New Horizon for Science - Summit on Tethers

November 18, 2013
California Institute of Technology - Pasadena, CA 91125

Final Report


Stratospheric tethered aerostats have emerged as a compelling technological consideration throughout our study regarding science on airships. A tethered balloon platform could accomodate many of the science goals developed and organized by our study. While a tethered aerostat has never been successfully launched into the stratosphere, because of its immense promise we require a focused meeting of the top experts in high-altitude ballooning and aerostat technology together with the scientists and experimentalists organizing the broad range of science goals emerging from our study. Brainstorming sessions and discussions will focus on what is required for a trade study and technological demo for follow-on, to see this well-motivated technology onto success and broader impacts in both science and industry.

Summit Presentations

Rob Fesen
Dartmouth College

An Airship Platform vs. A Tethered Balloon Platform for Science Applications (2.8 MB pdf)

Mike Smith
Aerostar International, Inc.

Historical Literature Survey and Technical Summary of High
Altitude Tethered Programs (5.6 MB pdf)

Sara Smoot
Stanford University

Conceptual Design and Passive Stability of Tethered Platforms (3.8 MB pdf)