Benefits for Canada

Did you know? Fact number 1

The volume of the largest open stratospheric balloons used by CNES can be up to 1,200,000 m3.

Did you know? Fact number 2

The height of a deployed balloon, including the flight chain, is about 300 m, about half as tall as the CN Tower.

Did you know? Fact number 3

The envelope alone can be as high as a 35-floor building, or the height of the tower of Montreal's Olympic Stadium; and its diameter is equivalent to the size of 2 hockey rinks or 2 Airbus A-340s.

Did you know? Fact number 4

The area of the envelope, if deployed flat, is equivalent to approximately 8 soccer fields.

Did you know? Fact number 5

For more information on other types of balloons, visit the following website: (French only).

  • The Canadian Space Agency (CSA)-Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales (CNES) agreement will provide its community of users access to French stratospheric balloon flight opportunities here and around the world.

  • The balloons provide Canadian scientists and engineers with a new platform to test technologies and advance space science for far less than the cost of a satellite or a launcher – up to 40 times less.

  • Access to balloons are perfect for training the next generation of engineers and scientists by providing the opportunity to carry out concrete scientific experiments in a short period of time and obtain results quickly.

  • Stratospheric balloons are the only type of balloons that are capable of operating in this region of the atmosphere (12–45 km in altitude), which is too low for satellites, too high for aircraft and cleared too quickly by rockets.

  • Balloons rely on winds and buoyancy to take flight, require no engine or fuel, and are fully recovered after each flight, making them an environmentally responsible tool for scientific research and technology development.