Feeds

Playmonauts could down airliners, Canuck flyboy warns

Amateur balloon mission menace

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

A Canadian pilot has warned that audacious miniature figurine balloon missions could represent a "concern to aviation".

Captain Barry Wiszniowski, chairman of the Air Canada Pilots Association’s safety division, issued his alert following the recent Canuck Legonaut's ascent to 80,000ft (24,384m), which saw teenagers Mathew Ho and Asad Muhammad claim a slice of the upper atmosphere for their country.

Wiszniowski said: "I think in the 25 years that I’ve been flying I’ve seen two weather balloons that passed on one side of the aircraft or the other."

Not exactly a major threat to air traffic, then, but the flyboy insists that pilots "might not have enough reaction time if such a balloon popped up unexpectedly", and the results of an engine ingesting a large latex sphere could be serious.

Although Canadian Aviation Regulations don't cover amateur balloons, anyone wanting to hit the heights should inform Transport Canada before launching.

Ho and Muhammad did their homework before letting sending their Lego man on his way, to ensure they "weren’t doing anything dangerous or illegal". However, Ho admitted: "We got very lucky that nothing happened because there is always the possibility that something could go wrong."

For the record, El Reg's Paper Aircraft Released Into Space team, whose Vulture 1 aircraft and Playmonaut soared to a dizzying 89,591ft (27,307m) above Spain, had the necessary permission from local authority AENA for its launch.

Given that PARIS was the first high-altitude figurine mission, Ho's advice to wannabe balloonists raised a smile down here at Vulture Central. He said: "Try not to copy us. Pursue other creative interests and do your own thing and follow the rules." ®

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
Antarctic ice THICKER than first feared – penguin-bot boffins
Robo-sub scans freezing waters, rocks warming models
I'll be back (and forward): Hollywood's time travel tribulations
Quick, call the Time Cops to sort out this paradox!
Your PHONE is slowly KILLING YOU
Doctors find new Digitillnesses - 'text neck' and 'telepressure'
Reuse the Force, Luke: SpaceX's Elon Musk reveals X-WING designs
And a floating carrier for recyclable rockets
NASA launches new climate model at SC14
75 days of supercomputing later ...
Britain's HUMAN DNA-strewing Moon mission rakes in £200k
3 days, and Kickstarter moves lander 37% nearer takeoff
prev story

Whitepapers

10 ways wire data helps conquer IT complexity
IT teams can automatically detect problems across the IT environment, spot data theft, select unique pieces of transaction payloads to send to a data source, and more.
The total economic impact of Druva inSync
Examining the ROI enterprises may realize by implementing inSync, as they look to improve backup and recovery of endpoint data in a cost-effective manner.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.