The STWing-SEAS Blimp Project
Home  About Us  Members  Support  Images  Flight Schedule  Specs  Contact Us  Links  Site Map

Pictures from the First Blimp Flight

Assembly

The blimp begins to 
inflate.
Team members are excitedly waiting for the envelope to fill as Vito Sabella (left) attaches a sandbag to a mooring cable.

Attaching 
fins to the hull with cables.
Chris Hoess (left) and Joel Rice (right) attach the blimp fins to the hull.

Attaching gondola reinforcing rods and mooring.
Mike Bruni (left) attaches a sandbag, while Ben Tang and Chris (left and right center), Joel (background), and Sean Cusack (right) begin inserting reinforcing rods at the gondola attachment point.

Team members insert rods and steady the blimp.
Team members grapple to bring the blimp onto an even keel as they insert the rods.

Shaun closing nose.
Shaun closing the nose of the blimp after helium filling.

Engines are inspected before being attached to the blimp.
Final inspection of the engines occurs before they are attached to the envelope.

Ben and Mike conferring.
Mike (left) and Ben (right) confer over a clipboard.

Moving blimp forward for helium top-off.
Ben (center) and Dan Levin (right) pull the envelope forward to be topped off with helium.

Ben signals Joel to cut off helium.
Ben (right) signals Joel (center) to disconnect the helium, as Paul Vernanza (left) takes a picture.

Ben mooring as helium is removed.
Ben begins mooring the stern as the helium is rolled away.

Ben mooring after helium shut-off.
The helium tube has now been disconnected.

Ben mooring envelope.
Another shot of Ben tying down the inflated envelope.

Chris and Joel attaching a fin.
Joel (left) holding down lines to allow Chris (right) to attach the bottom fin.

Ben attaching cable to fins, Joel watching.
Ben (right) is attaching a control cable to the bottom fin servo, while Joel (left) looks on.

Ben attaching cable to fins.
Ben is attaching a control cable to the port fin.

Ben and Mike preparing to top off the blimp.
Ben is opening up the nose, while Mike prepares to attach the hose and top off with helium.

Ben and Vito examine an engine.
The right engine of the tethered blimp is examined before launch.

Flights

Blimp Pictures

Blimp lifting off.
The blimp begins to lift off, with handlers on the fore and aft tethers.

Flying blimp from below, moving forward.
The flying blimp from below, with engines at forward thrust.

Blimp flying, from the fifth floor.
The blimp as viewed from the fifth floor landing of Kings Court, engines set to full upward thrust. Note the photographers on the ramp at right, and curious spectators at English House windows.

Blimp at height of English House Rooftop Lounge, from below.
The blimp from below, about level with the Rooftop Lounge of English House.

Blimp landing, starboard engine stalled.
Blimp handlers tow the blimp forward and away from obstacles, as the starboard engine stops and the blimp is brought to earth.

Blimp skews due to engine failure.
Handlers race to steady the blimp as the starboard engine stops and the blimp skews.

Blimp lands, engine stopped.
The blimp comes in for a gentle landing and restart of engines.

View of blimp from below, shows fin detail.
A picture of the blimp from below shows the truss framework of the fins.

The blimp ascending.
The blimp lifts off of its stand for another flight.

Blimp canting over due to loss of starboard engine.
The starboard engine stall causes the blimp to lean to the right.

Blimp ascending on its tethers.
Blimp handlers let out line as the blimp rises.

Team Pictures

Team photo, front of blimp.
Back row, from left: Sean Cusack, Wendelin Michel, Joel Rice.
Middle row: Dan Levin, Paul Vernanza, Chris Hoess, Will Lovas.
Front row: Vito Sabella, Ben Tang, Mike Bruni, Lauren Bylsma, Michael Mehle.
Elan Ruskin (photographer) in background.

Blimp ascending on its tethers.
Another shot of the team holding the blimp aloft.

Team photo, along length of blimp.
The team arrayed along the length of the blimp.