The stratospheric glider is an affordable means of transporting instruments that study the stratosphere back to the ground. This platform is unmanned, it is transported to the stratosphere by means of a balloon together with a payload, which is then transported in a controlled manner to the planned destination.
It also works well in environments where the temperature is around -60 ° C, so it is very suitable for the stratosphere. After reaching the final height of the balloon, the glider is disconnected and returns to either the starting position or another planned destination by a sliding controlled descent. Of course, it can also be changed during the flight. All using GPS.
The devices are integrated into the glider so that they can collect data even at low temperatures and in the event of radiation that could otherwise damage them,
The inspiration for the project came during the launch of a stratospheric balloon, the payload of which had to be difficult to find. Thus, the overall process of launching a balloon is time and money consuming.
The goal is to efficiently transport payloads from the stratosphere back to earth. The secondary goal is to develop such a transport device that would be functional even in conditions of thin air not only on Earth, but also on Mars, for example.
In 2019, a glider with manual control was produced. Landing and stabilization were tested. The test on the balloon was during April – May 2020. We are currently working on avionics and an auxiliary drive to approach the target.