STRATOSPHERIC BALLOON ENDS UP IN SEYCHELLES WATERS
Reporting by Alain St. Ange, Victoria, Seychelles
(Posted 13th May 2020)
Alain St.Ange, the island’s former Minister for Tourism has confirmed that a stratospheric balloon had landed in the Seychelles waters.
Seychelles is the location that a Google Loon Balloon landed close enough to an outlying island of this mid-ocean archipelago. Loon is a network of stratospheric balloons designed to bring Internet connectivity to rural and remote communities worldwide.
It is being reported in the islands that Google had expected their balloon to land in the Seychelles waters and that they wanted the equipment recovered. Loon runs packs of five to 10 balloons. Together, they can provide an aerial mesh network (more users require more balloons) with backup balloons waiting nearby, ready to hop up. The balloons are designed to extend connectivity to billions around the world and their network travel on the edge of space delivering the needed connectivity to unserved communities around the world. Loon partners with mobile network operators globally to expand the reach of their LTE service.
One of their balloons that landed in Seychelles waters was recovered by workers on one of the islands and brought to shore. Alain St.Ange said that as far as possible it is believed that the crash landing in Seychelles was the Google Loon Stratospheric Balloon and that it was not any satellite or spacecraft.
Seychelles is a group of some 115 islands with both granitic and coral islands situated in the Indian Ocean just four degrees south of the equator.