Nasa comes to Wanaka
Wanaka Airport will become a new playground for United States space agency Nasa, which has announced a multimillion dollar test flight of a scientific balloon in March. The rugby field-sized balloon will cost $1.5 million to build and weighs 4000 kilograms.
Airport operations manager Ralph Fegan said the proposal had been in the pipeline for three years, but ‘‘kept under the radar’’ after the National Aeronautics and Space Administration identified Wanaka as a likely place for a launch.
When Fegan did mention the project people thought he was dreaming and did not believe him.
After the initial meetings with Nasa representatives, he began sending Nasa Columbia Scientific Balloon Facility site manager Danny Ball regular Easter and