Hot-Air Balloon Facts



  • Balloons are bags filled with a light gas or hot air both so light that the balloon floats in the air.
  • Balloons designed to carry people into the air are of two types: hot-air balloons and gas balloons filled with hydrogen or helium.
  • Hot-air balloons have a burner that continually fills the balloon with warm air to keep it afloat.
  • To carry two people a hot-air balloon must have a bag of about 1700 cubic metres in volume.
  • Balloons are normally launched at dusk or dawn when the air is quite calm.
  • As the air in the bag cools the balloon gradually sinks. To maintain height, the balloonist lights the burner to add warm air again.
  • To descend quickly the balloonist pulls a cord to let air out through a vent iii the top of the bag.
  • The first flight in a hot-air balloon was made in Paris on 15 October 1783 by French scientist Jean de Rozier in a balloon made by the Montgolfier brothers.
  • The first hydrogen gas balloon flight was made in Paris on 1 December 1783 by Jacques Charles and one of the two brothers Robert who built the balloon.
  • On 20 March 1999 Swiss Bertran Piccard and British Brian Jones completed the first round-the-world hot-air balloon flight.
  • Hot-air ballooning has become a popular sport.