the French company that makes you travel in space

Stratoflight has teamed up with Expleo to build a capsule capable of sending six people to the limits of space.

Young French companies are not lacking in ideas for finding a place in the new space market. Present on the CNES stand, the companies Stratoflight and Expleo arrived at the IAC with a futuristic model. A 1/6th representation of their space capsule. Eight meters long and four wide, it has the particularity of having a balcony.

Designed to reach the stratospheric atmosphere (35-40 km high), it must allow the six travelers to stroll on a small balcony to enjoy a unique view of the Earth and space. Stratoflight explains during the presentation that the spacecraft will use a hydrogen balloon to reach its cruising altitude.

This system is already widely used by space agencies to send probes (particularly meteorological) into the upper strata of the atmosphere. Reusing the same principle, Stratoflight wants to make its small capsule take off in this way, thus reducing the environmental impact of a flight.

The whole Stratoflight project is turned towards the planet. The capsule will be built from “recycled or recyclable” biosourced materials. In the long term, the Toulouse company hopes to achieve a zero carbon footprint level for the commissioning of a capsule.

Tourists can then go out, equipped with special suits, and enjoy a few minutes in the void. The device will then return to Earth. The return will be provided by a piloted wing which takes the form of a paraglider.

A total of six people and two pilots can take place in the capsule for such a trip. Many stratospheric flight projects exist around the world, but Starflight’s proposal is unique. With this balcony, she stands out from the competition and hopes to attract customers quickly.

An ecological space project

The development of a scale version is underway, Starflight hopes to be able to carry out a test flight in 2024. For Arnaud Longobardi, airline pilot and co-founder of the program, Stratoflight is a flight that provides “several exceptional experiences. »

The spacewalk is obviously the climax of such a mission, but the ascent, gentle, is also a unique moment. As for the return, it resembles a free flight in a paraglider. “In my view, this mission is the culmination of a pilot’s dream, but also a technological innovation that respects the planet. »

Frédérique Rebout, Head of Space for Expleo affirms that ecology has always played an important role in the design of this capsule. ” Our teams of space engineers designed this capsule with the aim of making space accessible to everyone, but also respecting the environment. »

An attractive project that opens its ticket office at the beginning of 2023. The first commercial flights will have taken place in 2025.

Leave a Comment