World View balloon venture picks chief pilot

Image: Ron Garan
NASA astronaut Ron Garan floats in the International Space Station’s Cupola in 2011. (Credit: NASA)

Former astronaut Ron Garan has a new vantage point for sharing what he calls “the Orbital Perspective”: his position as chief pilot for World View Enterprises.

Arizona-based World View wants to give passengers a near-space experience, by sending them up in a pressurized capsule that’s lofted to heights beyond 100,000 feet by a high-altitude balloon. During a leisurely ascent to the atmosphere, passengers would get a space-like view of the Earth below, with the black arc of space above. Then the capsule would be cut loose from the balloon for a parachute-assisted descent and landing.

Cost for the trip? $75,000.

Garan told GeekWire that his job will be to ensure the “safe accomplishment of all aspects” of flight – not only for the passenger flights in the future, but for the remote-controlled flights that are going on now.

Get the full story on GeekWire.

By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributing editor at GeekWire, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing. Check out "About Alan Boyle" for more fun facts.

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