A 28 metre (92 foot) long High Altitude Platform Prototype Airship is now ready for test flights after completing a hanger Float test.

 

The UK company AVEALTO Ltd. is in the final stages of developing a commercial High Altitude Platform (“HAP”) airship to provide telecom infrastructure. Vehicle development is being conducted by JP Aerospace in California. Later flight tests will be held in the Black Rock Desert in Northern Nevada.

The AVEALTO Ascender 28 vehicle has completed a comprehensive “Float Test” which is the last step prior to actual test flights. As part of the Float test, all the integrated systems of this vehicle were “flown” in the hanger.

John Powell, JP Aerospace Chief Designer said: “The Float Test was a huge success. As of today, we officially have an airship. The Ascender 28 will now be disassembled and moved to our flight line in Nevada, where we will make between 5-7 test flights over the coming months, testing all systems for function and increased flight duration. Later missions will also test the AVEALTO Telecom payload.”   

AVEALTO Ltd. is a United Kingdom company. The European Union Countries and the European Space agency have invested tens of millions of Euros on studies related to High Altitude Platforms for telecom use.


The results of these studies have been extremely positive. AVEALTO is tought to be the first company to invest its own funds into the development of a commercially viable High Altitude Platform vehicle.

“This test moves us another step closer to our goal. We look forward to a very successful flight test regime of both platform and payload, leading to our first commercial rollout of the 60-meter platform in 2018.” commented  Thomas  Olson, Director of Business Development


The planned 60 meter High Altitude Platforms will be solar-powered airships, which will remain on station in the stratosphere for up to six months at a time. Each High Altitude Platform will be able to provide high quality telecom infrastructure to a terrestrial footprint of 240-480 kilometers in diameter, depending on topography. Each High Altitude Platform vehicle will have more bandwidth than many large Geostationary Telecommunication satellites.

Avealto has assembled an experienced team that incorporates a blend of both telecoms and aerospace expertise. This team is led by Avealto founder, Walt Anderson, described as a telecommunication entrepreneur, and an early investor and supporter of commercial space activities. He is co-founder of the International Space University in Strasbourg, France. Telecoms companies founded by Mr. Anderson in the USA and Europe realised substantial exit valuations for early investors.

Avealto Ltd. says it is is a United Kingdom firm  which intends to eventually finance, construct and operate a fleet of High Altitude Platforms [airships].


Their goal is to deploy up to 200+ unmanned, stratospheric, long duration telecommunications platforms, providing mobile communication support; broadband; telecom backhaul; broadcasting; transportation safety services; and, public safety services. Modular swappable payloads can be tailored to suit specific locations and markets.

Avealto aims to complement existing terrestrial and satellite infrastructure, providing rapidly deployable connectivity for rural, remote, maritime, aeronautical and developing world customers, and integrating seamlessly with existing infrastructure.

Their partners JP Aerospace known as JP Aero has been designing, constructing and deploying high-altitude balloon systems for 39 years, for both commercial and government customers. These include the US Air Force, where the first initial design of the high-altitude airship was built and ground tested. JP is also known for it’s assist to STEM education initiatives, with its ongoing “Pongsat” program.


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