Airbus Perlan Mission II has wrapped up its Season 4 flights in Argentina, the team members have returned home, and the Perlan 2 glider is returning to the project’s home in Minden, Nevada.
While a rare stratospheric weather phenomenon kept the glider from reaching world-record altitudes this year, Airbus Perlan Mission II’s pilots nonetheless completed seven stratospheric flights, reaching 65,000ft on Sept. 17, 2019 – the third highest glider flight in history.
Perlan 2 has firmly established itself as an international asset for the global aerospace and meteorological research communities, able to obtain first-of-its-kind data on high altitude aerodynamics, extreme weather, and our earth’s climate.
Achievements this season:
- Stratospheric flights mapped the performance of the Perlan 2, obtaining greater knowledge about high-altitude wing-borne flight
- Improved aircraft systems performance, reliability
- Refined aerotow techniques; made highest aerotows in history
- Gathered data on how stratospheric waves influence the planet’s weather, climate, flight safety
- Collected data on rare sudden stratospheric warming (SSW) event as it disrupted the Polar Vortex – the strongest SSW ever recorded
- Launched 29 weather balloons into downwind wave fields
- Inspired the next generation of engineers, explorers, and innovators, with team members speaking to universities, schools; donated supplies to a local El Calafate school
- Shared video interviews, photos, and articles with global audiences through email, blog, podcasts, social media
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