Sailplane to the Stratosphere

Perlan 2A wall of cloud runs above the eastern slope of the Carson Range, which looms over the town of Minden, Nevada, about an hour south of Reno. The wall runs the length of the ridgeline that stretches south toward the desert cities of Palm Springs and Las Vegas. A broad expanse of brilliant blue sky separates it from another wall of cloud running parallel. Stretching from the California border across central Nevada is a series of cloud lines, like waves rolling toward the shore, accompanied by vicious winds. Airliners approaching Reno report severe turbulence, and most small aircraft are staying on the ground. For pilot Tim Gardner, however, the weather is perfect—ideal conditions for high-altitude soaring. “It’s killing me not to get up there,” he says, but the glider he’s learning to fly, Perlan 2, is not quite ready. Read more in the online-report of the AirspaceMagazine.

Airbus CEO Tom Enders visits Perlan in Minden

Perlan_Project_Airbus_EndersWe have been extremely busy in Minden with getting the Perlan ready for pressurized flight. That finally happened! And Dr. Tom Enders  (the top boss of Airbus) with other senior Airbus management team from Europe and USA came to fly on March 4, 2016. Tom and Jim pressurized the cabin and performed a ground test of instrumentation. Unfortunately the weather was not cooperative for Tom’s flight. That storm brought rain to Minden and from 20-60 inches of snow at ski resorts around Tahoe. (Micro-climatology at it’s finest!) The entire Perlan Team should get kudos for professionalism and esprit de corps!