Sunday, January 6, 2008

Meet an interesting person-Bertrand Piccard

Adventure and creativity is in this person's genes;

Bertrand Piccard, who flew a hybrid helium/hot air balloon (right) around the world in 1999, comes from a long line of adventurers.

In 1931, his grandfather Auguste Piccard was hailed as the first man in space for ascending 52,500 ft. in a pressurized capsule carried aloft by a balloon.

In 1956, Jean-Felixe Piccard, Bertrand's great-uncle, reached 58,000 ft. in a balloon craft that employed liquid oxygen instead of the much heavier, pressurized oxygen gas that was standard.

Bertrand's father, Jacques, guided a submersible he had built with his father (Auguste) to a record in 1960. It was the deepest dive in history--35,800 ft. to the bottom of the South Pacific's Marianas Trench.

In 1963, Jean-Felixe's son, Don--Bertrand's cousin--copiloted the first hot air balloon to cross the English Channel, popularizing propane-fired ballooning as a sport.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

his grandfather is the inspiration for Professor Calculus in Tintin