Vango launch first tent into space
Scottish camping brand Vango have become the first company to launch a tent into space, outandaboutlive.co.uk reports.
Whilst 'Space Camping' may be a few years off yet, Vango took a small step for camp-kind, sending their Airbeam tent into the stratosphere on its maiden voyage.
The small tent hitched a ride on a helium-filled latex balloon and went on to reach 31,500 metres above the Scottish Highlands. When at its highest, the tent was at three-and-a-half times the height of Everest.
Whilst the tent was - rather unsurprisingly - unmanned, four intrepid 'Vangonauts' in the form of action figures and teddies made the journey. Engineer Herman Vortex, captain Alex Infinity, field officer Peter Flux and navigator Jill Kasari had spent eight months training in super-cold temperatures and reduced-oxygen rooms to prepare them for their journey, the team claimed.
Once reaching their apex at 31,500 feet, the balloon popped under the pressure, sending the tent hurtling back to earth at a re-entry speed of 85 metres per second. Landing near Loch Tay, the team survived the journey shaken but unharmed, whilst the tent also reported a clean bill of health.
Speaking to grough.co.uk of the venture, a Vango spokesperson explained: "Take off went smoothly, minus a dip on take-off, with weather conditions being typical Scottish showers, and a snow storm during descent.
"GPS locators fitted to the command module broadcast a data package every eight minutes, allowing the team on the ground to predict the landing location, which was 70 miles away from base camp. The mission landed in wilderness near Loch Tay resulting in a 10km hike through snow, hail and bogs for the ground crew to rendezvous with the intrepid campers."