Talk:Hot air balloon

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Former good article Hot air balloon was one of the Engineering and technology good articles, but it has been removed from the list. There are suggestions below for improving the article to meet the good article criteria. Once these issues have been addressed, the article can be renominated. Editors may also seek a reassessment of the decision if they believe there was a mistake.
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Date Process Result
October 24, 2005 Good article nominee Listed
June 29, 2009 Good article reassessment Delisted
Current status: Delisted good article
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History of ballooning[edit]

Someone should take time and bring this in harmony with entries: 1. history of balooning and 2. montgoflier(?) brothers. The articles are very redundant and sometimes a wider topic ex. hist. of balooning has more detailed account things (of animals in the first flight) than the specialised entry, hot air ballons. There should be hierarchy in info.

Good luck to the brave one who embarks.... — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:33, 11 March 2013 (UTC)

Math Errors[edit]

I have read this article because I was curious how much hot air one needs to lift things, but even reading quite casually I immediately noticed basic problems with some of the numbers. In its illustration example, the article shows a lift of 200 or 300 kg, yet the "Generating Lift" section suggests 3m³/kg, which, if I were to believe that this is a 2500 m³ baloon (as claimed in another section) would result in about 800+ kg of lift. I tried to locate the error, but I immediately found quite a few other places with incorrect numeric references. Most of the errors I see result from incorrect conversion between the US and Metric units (for example, 2500 m³ does not equal to 100000 ft³), but for example the "Combined Mass" section contains basic arithmetic errors - you will not get the combined weight by adding the individual numbers. The "air in the envelope" item) reports the lift as 261kg (2812-2551) and immediately below it as 311kg (3538-3227). All of these numbers seem wrong (and somewhat random) if I apply simple arithmetic to the values mentioned in the article prior to this section. I am not sure how this many error could have been accumulated, but seeing so many I would be suspect of any numeric reference within the article. I recommend a thorough review of all of the examples for at least the basic arithmetic, and self consistency within the article. As far as the latter is concerned, if 1.2kg/m³ density is suggested, regardless of the fact that the 1.2 figure may have many physical conditions attached, an illustrative example calling for a 2500 m³ baloon must show the corresponding weight as 3000 kg (1.2 * 2500). (talk) 01:21, 14 June 2008 (UTC)

Made first pass at cleaning up. Most errors due to:
  1. Using different heated air temperatures: standardized to 210 F (the temperature at which example mass, 1595 lb, 723.5 kg would be lifted by 100,000 cubic foot, 2831.7 cubic meter envelope in the 68 F, 20 C standard atmosphere.)
  2. Rounding: added back in digits
  3. Mixing up what to include and what not: mass lifted does not included heated air
  4. Maybe some typos: I sure name enough while trying to fix things.
-AndrewDressel (talk) 03:53, 16 June 2008 (UTC)
I think that's all of it. At least it now matches my spreadsheet. The tables help make it clearer for me. Please feel free to double check my numbers. -AndrewDressel (talk) 15:12, 16 June 2008 (UTC)
Beautiful, all the numbers I was originally after now make sense. The table indeed improves readability. But since you asked - the section "Envelope Sizes" is still inconsistent, and with the nice round numbers the discrepancy is easy to spot: 35000/1000=35; 600000/15000=40; 100000/2500=40. The ft³/m³ ratio is about 35, so I would use 2500(90000) and 15000(530000) for the latter two. BTW, that (as most of the article) is Metric-centric but the examples appears to be based on US units (just something to consider). Zdenek.r (talk) 21:57, 16 June 2008 (UTC)
Okay, cleaned that up too. Switched to listing cubic feet first, because even Linstrand UK sells their evelopes by cubic feet. That appears to be some sort of an industry standard. Use 0.028316846592 m³/ft³ and then rounded to nearest whole m³. Now the three examples are: 21,000 ft³ (595 m³), 600,000 ft³ (16,990 m³), and 100,000 ft³ (2,832 m³). -AndrewDressel (talk) 14:42, 19 June 2008 (UTC)

Merge with Balloon (aircraft)?[edit]

As far as I can tell, these articles are trying to cover a great deal of the same information. Whilst I'm aware that the Balloon (aircraft) article covers gas-filled balloons, as well as hot air balloon, a glance at the page should be enough to justify a merge. I honestly think this would be worthwhile - though it would necessitate the title being changed to 'Balloon (aircraft)' (since you'd be including balloons of both the hot-air and gas variety).

CharlieRCD (talk) 17:16, 8 June 2008 (UTC)

Disagree. Balloon (aircraft) contains very little hot air balloon information. The areas of overlap, history and military use, should be addressed by sub articles. There already is one for History of military ballooning. One of History of ballooning (started June 10, 2008) would take care of the rest. -AndrewDressel (talk) 15:57, 9 June 2008 (UTC)
These should really be merged. The other article containing little info is more of a reason to merge!--عبد المؤمن (talk) 22:19, 28 February 2014 (UTC)

Erroneous info here[edit]

This may be a good article, but it makes a great error, as do many other web site articles, on insisting that the balloons used in the Civil War were hot air balloons. All the balloons of the North used gas, light coke gas at first, then generated hydrogen gas later on. The Enterprise (balloon) was not a military balloon. Please see my edited article there. Please se my article on the Union Army Balloon Corps there. The Confederates tried a couple oh Montgolfier style "hot smoke" balloons, but they also employed coke gas when available---and at that, not to much success. Magi Media 19:17, 25 February 2006 (UTC)Magi Media

And as for this line — was heard of it. Ben Franklin was in France to witness the first Montgolfier flight! But where does this citation come from:

The first hot air balloon flight in the United States took place on January 9, 1793. The 45 minute flight started in Philadelphia and ended in Gloucester County, New Jersey. The flight was witnessed by George Washington.

I can confirm that the first balloon flight in the US was indeed made by Jean-Pierre Blanchard on 9-Jan-1793 from Philidelphia. I can't confirm the landing point or if Washington witnessed the flight. Also, I don't know if it was a hot air or gas balloon. Blanchard is known to have flown both types at different times. As for Franklin, he did indeed live in (or near) Paris from 1776 thru 1785. I recall that he did witness at least one balloon flight during this period, but I don't know if this includes the very first one. However, since the first flight was highly publicized in advance and Franklin was "at court" at that time and he was famous at the time primarily for his scientific work, my guess is that he would have moved Heaven and Earth to be there. But, I don't have a specific reference at hand. As for the Civil War gas balloons: good point. I suggest removing the discussion of Lowe's gas balloons, etc from this article completely. It belongs in the "gas balloon" and/or "balloon (aircraft)" articles, not here. A short mention of smoke balloons does seem appropriate. By the way, there is no "smoke balloon" article yet. Also, since we're messing with the history section, what's this stuff about the first balloons being "rigid"? I never heard of any mention of an internal structure in them before. Blimpguy 22:22, 18 March 2006 (UTC)


I saw an article arguing that Steve Fossett's trip wasn't technically a circumnavigation, because he was south of the 60th parallel; I don't know how common a view this is, and leave it to those more knowledgable to decide whether to add any discussion. Piha 21:20, 25 Aug 2003 (UTC)

The organization that sets the rules for these sorts of records is the Paris based FAI ( The way it works, each type of aircraft has its own rule making committee. As it happens, the rules for balloon circumnavigation are different from those for other types of aircraft. The route Fossett took qualifies for a balloon circumnavigation, but would not have qualified for an airplane, etc.

Blimpguy 00:11, 27 Aug 2003 (UTC)

That makes sense; thanks very much for explaining. Piha 02:20, 27 Aug 2003 (UTC)

Don't understand the change of "first" to "second" manifestation of air power. I have reverted. If reverting back again please add (at least as an aside) what the first one is. Blimpguy 23:14, 6 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Annual Balloon Festivals[edit]

As a thoroughly BBQ'ed newbie, I would first like a concensus to add more Annual Balloon Festivals.

I personally find Annual Balloon Festivals a wholesome community event which is great for the community.

Some reccommendation (cautiously without URLs):

  • 32nd Annual, Adirondack Hot Air Balloon Festival - NY
  • 31st Annual, Colorado Balloon Classic - CO
  • 29th Annual, Helen to the Atlantic Balloon Race - GA
  • 26th annual, Thunderbird balloon Classic - AZ
  • 25th Annual, Plano Balloon Festival - TX
  • 24th Annual, Lisle Eyes to the Skies Festival - IL
  • 21th Annual, Hot Air Jubilee - MI
  • 20th Annual, University Motors Mountaineer Balloon Festival - WV
  • 19th Annual, High Hopes Balloon Festival - NH
  • 17th Annual, World Hot Air Balloon Championship
  • 15th Annual, Hot Air Balloons Championship of Poland - (Poland)
  • 14th Annual, Kiwanis Balloonfest - IN
  • 14th Annual, Gatineau Hot Air Balloon Festival (Quebec - Canada)
  • 12th Annual, European HAB Championships - (Luxembourg)
  • 10th Annual, Northwest Connecticut Balloon Festival - CT
  • 6th Annual, Great Northern Balloon Festival & Air Show 2004 - NY
  • 6th Annual, Balonmania (Czech Republic)
  • 4th Annual, Mansfield Balloon Festival - (Australia)
  • 2nd Annual, Big Bear Balloon Festival - OH
  • First Annual, Warren County Farmers' Fair First Annual Balloon Festival - NJ

weide 02:49, 5 Dec 2004 (UTC)

I'm not sure that a list of balloon festivals would add anything to this page. It is also not very encyclopedic. If an individual event is notable for some reason (it is the biggest in a region for example) then the event should have a wiki article on it in its own rightand a link provided from this page. ChrisUK
Perhaps the right thing is start a new page "list of annual balloon festivals". I would organize it on a per country basis. Blimpguy 21:53, 5 Dec 2004 (UTC)
Sounds a good idea to me, then this page could link directly to the list. Over to you weide to create one - your list looks like a good start already ChrisUK 22:23, 5 Dec 2004 (UTC)
Exactly - a new page "list of annual balloon festivals".
Each Festival would at least show as a red link (no target page yet existent) with an implied request for expansion. A separate general page "Balloon Festivals" would be nice, with an article on the benefits to communities that have one. weide 22:30, 5 Dec 2004 (UTC)
DONE - please feel free to edit. weide 22:50, 5 Dec 2004 (UTC)
Can't find the new page. Please add a link to it at the bottom of the main article. Blimpguy 23:02, 5 Dec 2004 (UTC)
I changed the header to be a link. Should I add an Internal Link section?

I think that I will break out a section United States Baloon Festivals on that new page, with the other countries above it. weide 23:05, 5 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Good new page started - I'm just going to move the wiki link away from the sub heading and into the text, since the wiki style guides don't like links in subheadings see Wikipedia:Manual of Style (headings)

Erroneous addition of "1919" picture[edit]

RI -

I believe the picture you added is not of hot air balloons but rather of observation and/or barrage balloons from early in last century. These are filled with unheated gas (typically hydrogen) see barrage balloon. It's a nice picture, you might consider adding it to the barrage balloon article. Blimpguy 18:41, 28 May 2005 (UTC)

Well, I took my idea of what this is from the image source, which clearly says they are hot air balloons. I remember looking at the picture thinking "Wow, these hot air balloon designs sure look unusual", but obviously I didn't think enough. Thank you for catching this. Rl 20:07, 28 May 2005 (UTC)
I moved the image to Image:Balloons 1919.jpg. I'm not sure about adding it to barrage balloon, I'd rather not be wrong again. Rl 20:20, 28 May 2005 (UTC)

Delisted GA[edit]

There are no references. slambo 10:59, 24 October 2005 (UTC)

Added References section and put article back on good article list. Although I think the criticism was a tad excessive. Good articles can have one or two elements missing and still be good.

formula for lift[edit]

User added the following

The formula for the lift of a hot-air balloon is:

L=[do To/po] Vpa [1/Ta – 1/Tb] 1b

Where: do = surface density, To = surface temperature, po = Surface pressure, V = balloon volume, pa = ambient pressure, Ta = ambient temperatur, Tb = balloon temperatur

This looks like nonsense to me. If not, please explain. Blimpguy 13:35, 21 December 2005 (UTC)

I have tried to add material on the physics of lift - relating the uplift due to displaced air at ambient temperature to the total weight given in the article. However, at the first attempt the total weight was slightly greater than the uplift! I think this is due to an error in the density of the hot air, so I have suggested a correction to this as well, but this now makes that section less clear. Should I just delete the original values? BenKeeping 08:31, 4 September 2007 (UTC)


I just rearranged everything and took some out; the article was way too crowded before. Hopefully this won't offend anyone. I tried to make it more logical and neat, because some of the pictures were redundant. In any case, I think it looks better now, and the first two pictures go together pretty well because they're both at night.--Zambaretzu 15:11, 21 March 2006 (UTC)

In my opinion it's back to looking awful picture-wise. Compare to my last version; if other people agree I might rearrange the pictures again.--Zambaretzu 08:26, 4 April 2006 (UTC)
Be bold in editing.Blimpguy 12:03, 4 April 2006 (UTC)

Looks alot better


Could someone take a look at the imperial/metric useage in the 3rd paragraph on The Revival of the Hot-Air Balloon and make it consistent? At the moment it is rather confusing. I would edit, but unfortunately numbers are most certainly not my forte. Sephui 01:43, 15 May 2006 (UTC)

Thin layers of metal?[edit]

"The first hot air balloons were basically cloth bags lined with a thin layer of metal ..."

Can this possibly be true? What kind of metal did they use? Even a thin layer must have weighed a lot. Any references? AndrewDressel 11:59, 31 May 2006 (UTC)

AndrewDressel -- You're right. I did add that bit about metal. And not all that long ago. I have to agree that it doesn't seem right to me either. Not impossible. A layer of "tin foil" would be a clever and useful lining for a flammable material and not all that heavy. But a quick review of my library on the subject finds no confirmation. The first Montgolfier balloons were certainly cloth -- sometimes lined with paper. I'll switch the wording from metal to paper . As I'm not prone to random visions, I don't think I made it up. So, when I get a chance, I'll take a more thorough look through my books on the subject to see where I might have gotten the metal bit. Regards. Blimpguy 00:00, 2 June 2006 (UTC)

"NASA" nonsense.[edit]

I removed this, as it looked like errant nonsense to me. If it was legit, it should probably have a source... 14:45, 15 June 2006 (UTC)

Nonsense indeed. At best it is a confused version of some serious proposals to use gas balloons for exploring Mars and Venus. But hot air, I think not. Blimpguy 14:58, 15 June 2006 (UTC)

Roziere Picture[edit]

I moved the technical picture labeled as the Virgin Pacific Flyer to the Roziere Balloon page as it is actually a drawing of the Virgin Global Challenger balloon which was a Roziere.

GA Re-Review and In-line citations[edit]

Members of the Wikipedia:WikiProject Good articles are in the process of doing a re-review of current Good Article listings to ensure compliance with the standards of the Good Article Criteria. (Discussion of the changes and re-review can be found here). A significant change to the GA criteria is the mandatory use of some sort of in-line citation (In accordance to WP:CITE) to be used in order for an article to pass the verification and reference criteria. Currently this article does not include in-line citations. It is recommended that the article's editors take a look at the inclusion of in-line citations as well as how the article stacks up against the rest of the Good Article criteria. GA reviewers will give you at least a week's time from the date of this notice to work on the in-line citations before doing a full re-review and deciding if the article still merits being considered a Good Article or would need to be de-listed. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact us on the Good Article project talk page or you may contact me personally. On behalf of the Good Articles Project, I want to thank you for all the time and effort that you have put into working on this article and improving the overall quality of the Wikipedia project. LuciferMorgan 02:46, 13 December 2006 (UTC)

Tone[edit] (talk) thinks "this article or section is not written in the formal tone expected of an encyclopedia article", but declined to provide any examples. I've just read through it, and it sounds good to me. Suggestions anyone? -AndrewDressel 14:30, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

I guess Shomari15 disagrees, so off the tag comes. That was easy. -AndrewDressel 14:37, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

External Links: the spam tag[edit]

I think that the solar balloons link is a spam link, but I want to know what other people think. Thank you Stwalkerster 21:17, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

Article getting long[edit]

WP now reports "This page is 39 kilobytes long." I suggest we re-activate (remove the redirect from) the Hot air ballooning article and move content about the activity, as opposed to the equipment, to that new article. This has worked well in with Bicycle and Cycling and Motorcycle and Motorcycling. Comments?

Well, it is done, for the better, I hope. At least the article is back under the suggested maximum of 32k, and the table of contents isn't quite as long. I'm not sure how to handle history, so I've included it in both for now. -AndrewDressel 15:41, 9 March 2007 (UTC)


"The kite is another old successful human flight technology dating from earlier than Hot air balloons." -User:Ksyrie

I see at least two issues with this addition. First, it is unreferenced. Second, even the kite article does not call kites "human flight technology" but uses "flying tethered man-made object" instead. The distinction I believe is whether humans are carried aloft. At some point, kites have been used to carry humans aloft, but it is not clear that this ever happened before 1783.
Finally, if this kite comment remains, the distinction should be made that the hot air balloon flights beginning in 1783 were free flights: untethered. -AndrewDressel 20:24, 2 April 2007 (UTC)
Also, it is not clear if the ballooning "dating back to the Zhuge Liang in 2 or 3rd centuary" carried any human passengers. That is what is meant by "successful human flight technology". If not, it should not be in this article. References, anyone? -AndrewDressel 14:31, 3 April 2007 (UTC)
Now I see "Unmanned hot air balloons are popular in Chinese history" in the history section, so it does not fit in what is described as "successful human flight technology". -AndrewDressel 17:42, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

When was the first manned flight with hot air balloons?[edit]

I see two contradictory paragraphs here. the first one is in the introduction, the second one in the History section:

  1. "The first flight carrying humans was made on November 21, 1783, in Paris by Pilâtre de Rozier and the Marquis d'Arlandes."
  2. "...the first balloon flight with humans on board took place on October 19, 1783 with the physician Pilâtre de Rozier, the manufacture manager, Jean-Baptiste Réveillon and Giroud de Villette, at the Folie Titon in actual Paris. Officially, the first flight was 1 month later, 21 November 1783. King Louis XVI had originally decreed that condemned criminals would be the first pilots, but a young physicist named Pilâtre de Rozier and the Marquis Francois d'Arlandes successfully petitioned for the honor. "

It is needed to clarifiy this. Mazarin07 19:52, 22 April 2007 (UTC)

This is still an issue 2 months later! Due to google exposure, this page will probably get a good bit more traffic. Fix these facts! -- Anon —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:55, 4 June 2008 (UTC)

Finally cleared up. According to U.S. Centenial of Flight Commisstion, the October flight was tethered, and the November flight was free. -AndrewDressel (talk) 18:40, 4 June 2008 (UTC)

Flying eggs[edit]

I believe the examples listed are of eggshells propelled by rapidly escaping jets of gas and not lifted by buoyancy. That is why the 2nd and 3rd examples mention closing up the hole, in order to build pressure. Without a hole for expanding gas to escape or the flexibility to expand in volume, a vessel can never become lighter than the air it displaces. Can anyone find a good source for egg volume and egg shell mass? I suspect it will be trivial to show that even if the interior of an eggshell were completely evacuated, its mass far out weighs the air it displaces. I'd just weigh an empty eggshell myself, but that would be OR. -AndrewDressel 12:12, 22 October 2007 (UTC)

Here is the text from the article:

Yet the first known evidence of model flight in China employing the use of hot air comes from the Huainanzi, a Taoist book written by the Chinese prince Liu An in the 2nd century BC.[1] This ancient Chinese text stated:
A similar method of making egg shells float in the air on their own accord is discussed in Rashi's commentary on the bible "Even were you to fill an eggshell with dew and close up its opening and place it in the sun, it will, on its own, rise into the air"(Rashi's commentary on exodus chapter 16 verse 14), and was re-discovered in Europe by the 17th century, yet this was achieved by means of steam, not hot air like in the earlier Chinese experiment.[1] Jacques de Fonteny's poem L'Oeuf de Pasques written in 1616 was one of the earliest accounts that explained the procedure.[1] A small hole was made on the egg's outer shell, whereupon all its contents could be drained; after a period of drying, a small amount of water was poured in through the tiny hole and sealed with wax.[1] When set in the hot sun, the steam produced by the water inside the egg would cause it to temporarily float in the air, then fall back down.[2]
  1. ^ a b c d e Needham, Volume 4, Part 2, 596.
  2. ^ Needham,, Joseph (1986). Volume 4, Physics and Physical Technology, Part 2, Mechanical Engineering. Science and Civilization in China (Volume 4 Part 2 ed.). Taipei: Caves Books Ltd. p. 596. 

And here is the reference showing how it is simply impossible. The mass of an empty egg shell it too great (7 g (0.247 oz)) for the buoyancy caused by the air it displaces (0.035 grams (0.001 oz)) to ever lift it. I suspect these descriptions may be reporting jet action, but that has no place in a hot air balloon article.

Well, a normal large hen's egg has a volume of about 70 ml (4.272 cu in), and the shell weighs about 7 g (0.247 oz). An unboiled egg is sealed by a material in the shell, and by a membrane that excludes water but through which gases can diffuse for the respiration of the embryo. A boiled egg cannot be emptied through a small hole, and the dried membrane of an unboiled egg would probably be a good seal. That is neither here nor there, however, since the weight of the air displaced by the eggshell is about 0.09 grams, and this is the maximum buoyant force. Filled with water vapour, the buoyancy is closer to 0.035 g (0.001 oz), which is too small for liftoff by a factor of 200. If I have not made some gross error, I believe it would be a waste of time trying to fly eggs.
-Dr James B. Calvert, Associate Professor Emeritus of Engineering, University of Denver, Registered Professional Engineer, State of Colorado No.12317

-AndrewDressel (talk) 14:32, 28 December 2007 (UTC)

Try using a naked [egg shell] which is less than 1/250 of the total eggshell mass which would cover the amount needed to make it fly. Additionaly Rashi's commentary on the bible was translated wrong. Rashi uses the word "shfoferes" which properly translated would mean the egg membrane not the shell which is called klipa. Therefore this does belong in the article since this would be the first hot air balloon. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Beebee2100 (talkcontribs) 07:20, 18 January 2008 (UTC)

Cool. All we need now is a reference for that 1/250 number, and for the mistranslation. Without them, this is original research and cannot stay. -AndrewDressel (talk) 12:55, 18 January 2008 (UTC)

Simply changing the wording in the "translation" doesn't cut it. Without references, it is original research.

A method of making objects float in the air on their own accord by means of hot air is discussed by the 11th century C.E. Jewish scholar Rashi in his commentary on the bible "Even were you to fill an eggshell membrane with dew and close up its opening and place it in the sun, it will, on its own, rise into the air" -Rashi Exodus Chapter 16 Verse 14
Where is this quotation take from? Certainly not Rashi's original writing. Whose translation is it? Where is the reference for the membrane weighing 1/250 of the total eggshell? -AndrewDressel (talk) 14:11, 30 April 2008 (UTC)

Fair use rationale for Image:Virginpaccapsule.jpg[edit]

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Please go to the image description page and edit it to include a fair use rationale. Using one of the templates at Wikipedia:Fair use rationale guideline is an easy way to insure that your image is in compliance with Wikipedia policy, but remember that you must complete the template. Do not simply insert a blank template on an image page.

If there is other fair use media, consider checking that you have specified the fair use rationale on the other images used on this page. Note that any fair use images lacking such an explanation can be deleted one week after being tagged, as described on criteria for speedy deletion. If you have any questions please ask them at the Media copyright questions page. Thank you.

BetacommandBot (talk) 02:39, 12 February 2008 (UTC)

Military use[edit]

The section of military use only seems to be mentioning other balloon types. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:29, 8 April 2008 (UTC)

Fabric Coatings[edit]

"Impermeability" is misspelled as "impermiability." —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:34, 4 June 2008 (UTC)

Bartolomeu de Gusmão[edit]

While the text about Bartolomeu de Gusmão is well sourced, and I don't doubt its veracity, I don't believe it should get the prominence it now has in the lead paragraph. Here's why:

  1. He flew a model with no living passengers. So apparently did Zhuge Liang of the Shu Han kingdom, in the Three Kingdoms era (220-280 AD), according to published sources, but that only gets a mention in the Premodern section.
  2. He designed, but never built, a craft to carry passengers, and the image of it appears to be no more likely to have flown than the wings of Daedalus and Icarus.

As this article is about the human-carrying flight technology, I suggest:

  1. The lead paragraph go back to mentioning only the Montgolfier brothers, and the first pilots: Jean-François Pilâtre de Rozier and François Laurent d'Arlandes.
  2. Bartolomeu de Gusmão be moved to the Premodern section along with Kongming lanterns and the Nazca culture. Perhaps renamed the section to Early unmanned flight.
  3. The First balloon flight section be renamed back to First recorded manned balloon flight.

Comments? -AndrewDressel (talk) 21:14, 4 June 2008 (UTC)

First balloon flight[edit]

There's a problem with this sentence (the word buoyancy misplaced?): The first clearly recorded instances of balloons using hot air to carry passengers buoyancy. Not correcting it myself since I'm not sure what was really meant. Awien (talk) 22:27, 4 June 2008 (UTC)

It's left over from the rush of editing generated by the google main page today. I've tried to clean it up. -AndrewDressel (talk) 00:37, 5 June 2008 (UTC)


"The smallest, one-person, basket-less balloons (called "Hoppers" or "Cloudhoppers") have as little as 21,000 ft³ (595 m³) of envelope volume (for a perfect sphere this would mean a radius of around 13.3 metres (44 ft)). " Huh? If the shape is a perfect sphere, then the volume = 4/3 pi r^3. For a volume of 595 m^3, the radius is then 5.22 meters, not 13.3 meters. Inkan1969 (talk) 05:23, 23 July 2008 (UTC)

Good catch. No idea when or how that got in there. I'll fix it right now. -AndrewDressel (talk) 13:28, 23 July 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for correcting this. I was designing an ideal gas law problem for my physics class and I wanted to use hot air in a balloon. I was looking for the volume of a hot air balloon. BTW: Is the pressure of the air in the balloon one atm? I wasn't sure if the pressure of hot air inside a balloon was supposed to be equal to the pressure of the air outside the balloon, or if it was supposed to be more to account for the tension of the curved envelope. Inkan1969 (talk) 18:50, 23 July 2008 (UTC)
Since the mouth is open, and air is free to flow in or out, pressure can automatically equalize, so it should be at one atm. -AndrewDressel (talk) 20:32, 23 July 2008 (UTC)

Consistency of units[edit]

This page seems to have a lot of mixed units in it, with no real consistency as to which are quoted first. In some places, the SI system is adhered to, with the appropriate SI or metric unit quoted first, with an American or outmoded unit following it. In other sections, this situation is reversed. Some consistency would be useful, I think. Ethanoylchloride (talk) 14:25, 16 August 2008 (UTC)

Competition Balloons with Low Aerodynamic Drag?[edit]

I noticed under the heading "Shape", the statement "Finally, some specialized balloons are designed to minimize aerodynamic drag to improve flight performance in competitions.[19]"

Firstly, I wondered whether this is true, given that, AFAIK, balloons generally travel at windspeed, and thus only get drag as they enter different wind layers, and I would have thought that maximising drag would therefore improve flight performance in competitions, by gaining faster acceleration to windspeed. Is there some sense to this?

Secondly, the link [19] points to a website that seems to have expired; hence, I can't check the source. Peter Bogra (talk) 02:17, 14 February 2009 (UTC)

First, racing balloons have lower drag in order to ascend and descend more quickly or with less of an increase or decrease in buoyancy.
Second, the link is now repaired. -AndrewDressel (talk) 04:21, 14 February 2009 (UTC)


hi what is this website about —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:53, 27 April 2009 (UTC)

GA Reassessment[edit]

This discussion is transcluded from Talk:Hot air balloon/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the reassessment.

GA Sweeps: On hold[edit]

As part of the WikiProject Good Articles, we're doing Sweeps to determine if the article should remain a Good article. I believe the article currently meets the majority of the criteria and should remain listed as a Good article. However, in reviewing the article, I have found there is are several issues that needs to be addressed.

1. There are several sections throughout the article that are unsourced, as well as a "citation needed" tag that need to be addressed. Add citations for statements that a reader that doesn't know about the topic would likely question. Consider using some of the external links for citing information if they are reliable sources.
Several sources added and statement with "citation needed" tag removed because source could not be found. -AndrewDressel (talk) 15:36, 18 June 2009 (UTC)
I added a list of statements below that should be sourced. --Happy editing! Nehrams2020 (talkcontrib) 19:00, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
2. Throughout the article there are various grammar issues; the article would benefit from a copyedit. There are several single sentences throughout the article. To improve the flow of the article, either expand on them or incorporate them into a relevant paragraph.
Several small paragraphs have been combined into larger ones. -AndrewDressel (talk) 14:51, 18 June 2009 (UTC)
I still see some issues with this, and will perform a copyedit once sources are added for the below statements. --Happy editing! Nehrams2020 (talkcontrib) 19:00, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
3. The "globalize" tag has been on the article for over a year, expand the section to provide a worldwide view of the topic.
The section now covers English language examples from North America, Europe, and Asia. That's about as global as it's likely to get. -AndrewDressel (talk) 17:16, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
4. The "see also" section would benefit from some trimming. Some of those articles' links could be worked into this article.
Done. -AndrewDressel (talk) 17:16, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
5. The inline citations need to include details of the author, publisher, date, etc. Most only have the title and access date. To make it easier, consider using the citation templates at WP:CITET.
Some done. Several sources do not have a named author. -AndrewDressel (talk) 17:16, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
Even if sources don't have author try and include the name of the website for the publisher. Looking through some of the sources I could find some authors/dates. Also, for titles, all caps shouldn't be used even if the website you got it from does.

Needs citations:

  1. "The heater or burner is fueled by propane, a liquefied gas stored in pressure vessels, similar to high pressure forklift cylinders."
  2. "The most common technique for sewing panels together is called the double lap seam."
  3. "The most common type of top vent is a disk-shaped flap of fabric called a parachute vent."
  4. "This is called a whisper burner and is used for flight over livestock to lessen the chance of spooking them. It also generates a more yellow flame and is used for night glows because it lights up the inside of the envelope better than the primary valve."
  5. "The lift generated by 100,000 ft³ (2831.7 m³) of dry air heated to various temperatures may be calculated as follows:"
  6. "Many systems, especially those that carry passengers have completely redundant fuel and burner systems: two fuel tanks, connected to two separate hoses, which feed two distinct burners."
  7. "At a minimum the pilot should wear flame resistant gloves." This reads like a command. If several sources recommend it, then reword this statement to say so. Address the other following sentences on attire.
  8. "Finally, some balloon systems, especially those that hang the burner from the envelope instead of supporting it rigidly from the basket, require the use of helmets by the pilot and passengers."
  9. "Replacing an entire panel requires the stitching around the old panel to be removed, and a new panel to be sewn in with the appropriate technique, thread, and stitch pattern."
  10. "Anything larger than that must be registered (have an N-number), have an airworthiness certificate, and pass annual inspections."
  11. "In the UK, the person in command must hold a valid Private Pilot's License issued by the Civil Aviation Authority specifically for ballooning; this is known as the PPL(B)."
  12. "The largest manufacturer of hot air balloons in the world is Cameron Balloons of Bristol, England, who also own Lindstrand Balloons of Oswestry, England."
  13. "Cameron Balloons, Lindstrand Balloons and another English balloon manufacturing company, Thunder and Colt (since acquired by Cameron), have been the main innovators and developers of special shaped balloons."

This article covers the topic well and has an excellent source of free images. There are other issues that need to be addressed, but let's tackle these ones first. I will leave the article on hold for seven days, but if progress is being made and an extension is needed, one may be given. If no progress is made, the article may be delisted, which can then later be renominated at WP:GAN. I will contact the main contributors of the article as well as the related WikiProject to share the workload. If you have any questions, let me know on my talk page and I'll get back to you as soon as I can. --Happy editing! Nehrams2020 (talkcontrib) 03:38, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

Cool, we'll get on it. -AndrewDressel (talk) 11:45, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
One week later, some progress has been made. I struck through the completed tasks, but added some more details for the uncompleted ones. Good work on addressing all of the issues I raised. I can help you with the citation formatting and copyedit once the above statements have sources added. If you have any questions, let me know. I'll leave the article on hold for another week. --Happy editing! Nehrams2020 (talkcontrib) 19:00, 22 June 2009 (UTC)

GA Sweeps: Delisted[edit]

The article has been on hold for several weeks and only a few of the issues were addressed. As a result I have delisted the article as it still has a way to go before meeting the GA criteria. Continue to improve the article, addressing the issues above. Once they are addressed, please renominate the article at WP:GAN. I look forward to seeing the further improvement of the article, and don't hesitate to contact me if you need assistance with any of these. If you disagree with this review, a community consensus can be reached at WP:GAR. If you have any questions, let me know on my talk page and I'll get back to you as soon as I can. --Happy editing! Nehrams2020 (talkcontrib) 23:50, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

Aviation Wikiproject quality rating[edit]

Start: An article that is developing, but which is quite incomplete and, most notably, lacks adequate reliable sources. Really? Until recently it was a Good Article, and the reviewer that eventually delisted it said "this article covers the topic well." Except for a few more references, it meets the all the B class criteria:

  1. The article is suitably referenced, with inline citations where necessary.
  2. The article reasonably covers the topic, and does not contain obvious omissions or inaccuracies.
  3. The article has a defined structure.
  4. The prose contains no major grammatical errors and flows sensibly, but it certainly need not be "brilliant".
  5. The article contains supporting materials where appropriate.
  6. The article presents its content in an appropriately accessible way.

-AndrewDressel (talk) 21:55, 1 August 2009 (UTC)

Modern safety record[edit]

How does it compare with other sports? (talk) 23:15, 18 October 2009 (UTC)

Article protection[edit]

This article is being vandalized very often. I would propose that we protect it, with a "semi-protection", so that only registered users can edit it, and anonymous IP addresses will not be able to edit it. Do you agree? Jordiferrer (talk) 10:38, 19 May 2010 (UTC)


Should this page get the "Infobox Aircraft" template? —ᚹᚩᛞᛖᚾᚻᛖᛚᛗ (ᚷᛖᛋᛈᚱᛖᚳ) 'Bold text'23:24, 4 October 2010 (UTC)

Atmosphere inside balloon.[edit]

It has always seemed to me that the water vapour contribution to the balloon's buoyancy is not zero. For H2O weighs 18, wheas O2 weighs 32 and N2 ... etc. Therefore the water vapour in the hot gas should add to the buoyancy. Naturally, this vapour will quickly condense on the inner surface of the balloon.

Not a balloonist, but 'm sure someone out there has the numbers. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Suma rongi (talkcontribs) 09:27, 26 February 2011 (UTC)

External Links Spam Tag (More)[edit]

Someone editing this page has taken the liberty of deciding that pretty much any external links on this page are spam, and has removed them all... I put a link to a Wolfram formula for measuring the lift of any gas at any temperature in ambient air of any temperature, and the meddling editor decided that the wolfram contribution was not good because "wiki is not just a collection of link" this kind of stupid and over authoratative editing of others contributions should be severely discouraged as it discourages ordinary scientists from contributing anything at all to wiki. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)

Your comment constitutes a personal attack on me. Please comment on the content, not the editor. In this case, my edit was correct in that your insertion of an external link was not within Wikipedia policy. Ebikeguy (talk) 16:36, 17 December 2011 (UTC)

Parachute vent[edit]

I don't think the parachute vent is called what it is because it looks like a parachute when viewed from below. It's probably because round parachutes have an identical single vent hole in the top to regulate the air flowing through them, to keep turbulence from collapsing the chute. The vent hole in the top of a balloon envelope is identical to the vent hole in the top of a parachute, which would mean they are called "parachute vents" because in appearance and construction they are identical to...parachute vents. Not because it "looks like a parachute".AnnaGoFast (talk) 07:18, 14 January 2016 (UTC)


In a couple of the balloon accident articles in talks as if one can control a hot air balloon to a degree. The describes commercial sightseeing pilots "heading out and then turning back and returning to the field aft half an hour", and "making the usual figure eight pattern" or some such thing. If hot air balloon just drifts on the wind, how can one return to the field you took off from, and how can you make it fly in a figure eight? Does the wind blow different directions at different altitudes, and the pilot can find a measure of control by moving to the altitude that has wind going the way he wants, or what? Very mysterious. I'd always thought you took off, and went wherever the wind takes you, and then you land when you get low on fuel. But when I think about it, that would be very impractical for all these commercial sightseeing operations, who must be able to bring the customers back to their cars, etc. I guess they could have a bus go out and bring them all back. It would be nice if the article said something about that.AnnaGoFast (talk) 08:11, 14 January 2016 (UTC)

Yes, the wind generally blows in different directions at different altitudes, and the pilot can find a measure of control by moving to the altitude that has wind going the way he wants. See the section on steerage in the hot air ballooning article for more details. -AndrewDressel (talk) 17:21, 14 January 2016 (UTC)

Nazca Experiment[edit]

Would a section for speculated ancient hot air balloons be warranted? The Jim Woodmann Nazca theory of hot air balloons being the reason behind the massive lines lead to the testing of a hot air balloon made with ancient materials. The viability of their hot air balloon proved that they could have been used throughout the ancient world. [1][2] Houdinipeter (talk) 16:30, 25 July 2016 (UTC)

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