The company Perlan, financed by aerospace concern Airbus, 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 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 through the air, so it was not so easy to reach such a height for a non-flying aircraft.
The record was due to a lucky coincidence, because the ascending air currents do not reach the stratosphere anywhere. 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 US 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, which the developers put before themselves, will be even more difficult – in the future they plan to improve the glider in such a way that it could 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.