Funded by aerospace concern Airbus, Perlan, develops gliders designed for flights to the space border. The other day, developers reported on the new successful tests glider plan a new height record, which the aircraft could install.
The first version of the glider Perlan rose in the air in 2006 and was able to fly to a height of 15 kilometers. After that, the company began to have problems related to the death of its founder. But the remaining team after a while resumed development and began to search for investors. In 2014 Airbus agreed to act as the main sponsor of the project and began financing the creation of Perlan 2.
After several years of development and testing, Perlan 2 finally went on a flight and was able to take off almost a kilometer above its predecessor. The airframe is allowed to fly to the glider, so it was not so easy to reach such a height for a non-flying airplane.
The record was due to a lucky coincidence, because the ascending air currents reach the stratosphere far from everywhere. The Argentine part of the Andes is one of the few such places, and there it happens so to fly only a few times a year, – say the developers of Perlan 2.
In the near future Perlan 2 will go through several more tests, and then go to continue testing in the American state of Nevada, where the company’s engineers will continue to work on its design, based on the data obtained during the test.
The next task that the developers put before them will be even more difficult – in the future they plan to improve the glider in such a way that it can climb to a height of 27 kilometers. Judging by the data available to them, this may well happen. The date of the next flight is not yet called.