19th of June 2014
Balloon Tallinn opens to public tomorrow
After a successful testing a unique air ride Balloon Tallinn will be opened to public on Friday, 20th of June. A spectacular panoramic view over the Old Town, city center, park Kadriorg and the sea opens from the gondola of the gigantic helium filled balloon opening in harbor cruise terminal.
The viewing platform i.e. the gondola of Balloon Tallinn filled with helium and anchored to the ground can accommodate up to 30 people and allows passengers to enjoy panoramic views from the height of 120 metres. This is to become the highest open outdoor platform in the centre of Tallinn. In clear weather, the visibility from the Balloon Tallinn gondola will be over 40 kilometers. This is the highest open-air viewpoint in the Tallinn city center and the most northern attraction of its kind in Europe.
“On the international level Balloon Tallinn is a strong trump for Tallinn in a competition for tourists between neighbor capitals like St. Petersburg, Helsinki, Riga, Stockholm or Copenhagen. Definitely this unique attraction will attract a big number of tourists and will sure make them revisit Tallinn,” said vice-chairman of the Estonian Hotel and Restaurant Association board Feliks Mägus.
The environmentally friendly high-tech ride, one of its kind in the Nordic countries, is situated in the area between Terminal A and cruise ships’ pier of the Port of Tallinn. The manufacturer of the Balloon Tallinn, Lindstrand Technologies Ltd. (LTL) is the world leading creator and producer of the most advanced lighter-than-air airships and inflatable structures.
“Fickle weather and strong winds in June have a little bit postponed the opening of the Balloon Tallinn, but now all the preparations are done and the weather forecast is optimistic, so inhabitants and guests of Tallinn can enjoy the balloon ride,” said Sigre Luts, member of the board of Lennualev OÜ, the company operating Balloon Tallinn. The attraction opens to public tomorrow, on the 20th of June, the rest of the Balloon Tallinn complex including cafeteria and baggage lockers will be opened in July.
The balloon is attached to the ground with a tether cable (with the minimum carrying capacity of 42 tonnes) and controlled by means of an electrical winch system. It is 136 tonnes of concrete and an 11 tonne winch that will fix the balloon to the ground. The balloon is able to provide safe flights at the speed of wind up to 12 m/s. One ride lasts for 10–15 minutes.
The balloon is filled with helium, which is an absolutely inert, clean, non-toxic, non-explosive, non-flammable and odourless gas. The winch system will have a triple backup system and a local backup generator.
The octagonal viewing platform is attached to the helium balloon with a special net draped over the helium balloon. The range of vision from the viewing platform is open (in the open air) but enclosed in safety net with mesh still large enough to allow beautiful photos to be taken without hindrance.
Balloon Tallinn will be open until the end of September every day from 08:00 to 20:00, wind conditions permitting. There are over 40 air rides of this type in 18 countries of the world.
The helium balloon is meant for the whole family leisure as it provides the experience of flying an air balloon and all passengers, the youngest and the oldest alike, can enjoy the panoramic view. The balloon can also accommodate people with movement disorders and wheelchair users. A ride on the helium balloon can be booked for a private event as well.
The flights of Balloon Tallinn in Estonia will be regulated by aviation regulations. Flying such a balloon is as safe as going by plane. Two operators, one of them in the gondola and one on the ground will simultaneously pilot the balloon.
The manufacturer of the Balloon Tallinn, Lindstrand Technologies Ltd. (LTL) is the world leading creator and producer of the most advanced lighter-than-air airships and inflatable structures. The founder and the head of the company Per Lindstrand is a remarkable aeronautical engineer, pilot, pioneer and adventurer with world-wide recognition for his achievements in breaking through the boundaries of lighter-than-air technology. With designs certified in 48 countries and a perfect safety record, Lindstrand Technologies is the world’s most versatile manufacturer of aerostats, airships, gas balloons, tethered balloons and high-tech inflatable structures.
Earlier in 1999 LTL, in partnership with Daimler Chrysler Aerospace of Germany, was awarded a design contract by the European Space Agency (ESA) to develop a high altitude long endurance airship. In 2002, LTL was awarded the contract to design and manufacture the parachute for the planned Mars landing – Beagle 2. This was to be the most advanced parachute in the world. In 2003 the Beagle 2 landed successfully on Mars.
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