Balloon record in the air
CANBERRA, Australia: A 65- year- old Russian adventurer is on the brink of setting a record for flying solo in a balloon around the world non- stop and expected to land in Australia today.
Fedor Konyukhov hopes to land in the wheat fields near Northam in Western Australia state, shaving two days off the record of 13 days and eight hours set by American businessman Steve Fossett in 2002, Oscar Konyukhov said.
Konyukhov lifted off from Northam at 7.30am local time on July 12 in a carbon box 2m high, 2m long and 1.8m wide suspended from a 56m-tall helium and hot-air balloon.
The father had another 3 000km to go before he hoped to cross the southwest tip of Australia at 00:00 GMT.
The 1.6 ton balloon had flown 31 000km by yesterday at an average speed of 128km/h – ANA-AP