Jacques Besnard World Champion Second Time in a Row
Tuesday, 12 September 2000
In this year's 7th Hot Air Airship World Championship in Austria,
Jacques Besnard (Switzerland) successfully defended his title of world
champion. Jacques' father and mentor Charles Besnard (Switzerland) moved
up one notch and placed second after being third in Canada two years
ago. Rainer Hasenclever (Germany), who was runner-up in Canada, placed
third this year.
Compared to Canada two years ago, the weather was somewhat kinder on
competitors in Austria. A smaller than ever field was dominated by
German pilots (5 out of 10 pilots). But the Swiss Besnard dynasty ruled
over the medal ranks, all despite Besnard Senior's landing in a corn field.
Rick Wallace (USA) missed the first two flights because the airship he
was borrowing from first world champion (in 1988) Oscar Lindstrom had
not yet arrived from Sweden. Stories of depressurized banana-shaped
airships were heard and several airships had to miss one or more flights
due to technical difficulties. Serious hot air airship competition is
as exciting as ever! For more information, see the
official championship website.
Hot Air Airship Championship Results Online
Tuesday, 5 September 2000
I just discovered the second official web site for the 7th Hot Air
Airship World Championship which is currently taking place in Austria.
seems to contain more information than the site I mentioned earlier.
I suggest that you go directly to the
page to get in on the action.
Advanced Technologies Group Expands Activities
Monday, 14 August 2000
In late June, Airship Technologies changed its official name
to Advanced Technologies Group ("ATG") in order to reflect its expanded
activities. Projects currently under development include:
- SkyCat series of ultra-heavy lift airships,
- StratSat high altitude telecommunications platform,
- AT-10 (2,500 m3) blimp for advertising and pilot training,
- AT-04 (14,200 m3) multimission blimp and
- A-Tech high-performance aerospace diesel engines.
Also in late June, ATG's SkyCat prototype had its
succesful maiden flight
(picutred below). The radio controlled prototype, which ATG engineers
affectionately call "Sky Kitten", has demonstrated excellent
Advanced Technologies Group has unveiled an official
web site at
which provides detailed information about all of its projects.
Airship Convention in Friedrichshafen a Total Success
Monday, 14 August 2000
Almost 300 delegates attended the 3rd International Airship Convention
and Exhibition which was held July 1-5 in Friedrichshafen, Germany.
The Convention featured over 60 papers ranging from theoretical treatises
with lots of formulas to very entertaining reports about current
projects including lots of pictures.
The Convention coincided with the City of Friedrichshafen's
celebration of the centenary of Zeppelin airships. (The first Zeppelin
airship, LZ-1, had its maiden flight on July 2, 1900.) On Sunday morning,
Zeppelin Luftschifftechnik GmbH used the occasion to christen its prototype
NT-07. After long talks by numerous political figures, a granddaughter of
Graf Zeppelin christened the ship "City of Friedrichshafen".
On Sunday afternoon, the Centenary Celebration's main event was
an airship parade over Friedrichshafen harbor (pictured above). The
four airships participating were the Zeppelin Luftschifftechnik NT-07
prototype, CargoLifter's recently acquired Skyship 600B, Goodyear
Spirit of Europe One (a Lightship A-60+) and the Mazda Blimp (also a
Lightship A-60+). More pictures of the
are available courtesy of Zeppelin Luftschifftechnik and Christian Michel.
Due to the high number of papers this year, the papers were
presented over the span of three days (Monday through Wednesday) in two
concurrent sessions, mornings and afternoons. The technical papers were
complemented by a vast airship exhibition which allowed all major airship
companies to showcase their latest products and projects.
Convention was chosen to announce a
Advanced Technologies Group and IAR S.A. Brasov
in Romania to begin construction of the SkyCat 200 prototype later this year.
For information regarding the sale of proceedings and more
details about the Convention, please see the Airship Association's
Post Convention Report.
7th Hot Air Airship Worlds in Austria in September
Monday, 14 August 2000
The organization committee for the 7th Hot Air Airship World
Championship has unveiled an official
Championship Web Site,
and details on the history and functioning of hot air airships.
The Championship will take place September 1-10, 2000, in Bad Tatzmannsdor in the
Schielleiten Region of Austria.