Trajectory Optimization for Balloon Flight Planning


Roland R. Draxler


Weather and Forecasting, Vol. 11, No. 1, Pages 111 - 114, March 1996


Abstract. The recent solo trans-Pacific balloon flight was used as a test case to evaluate multiple trajectory techniques to select different pathways based upon potential variations in balloon altitudes.  Altitude changes between 3 km and 8 km above ground resulted in predicted ending locations varying from the Hawaiian Islands to the Atlantic coast, after five days travel.  The method can be used to select optimum flight altitudes based upon forecast meteorological fields.


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