Solar-powered balloons could generate electricity

hot air balloons

Ok, this is definitely a new idea.

[Use] solar energy to fill a balloon with hot air. The rising balloon pulls a tether, which turns a generator on the ground. Once the balloon has floated up to 3 kilometers, air is released and it loses buoyancy. The balloon needs less energy to be pulled down and a net power gain is reached as a result.

The developer estimates a balloon 88 meters in diameter could power 100 homes.


  1. 88 meters? Yikes, that’s almost the length of a football field in diameter, and more than that in height. Think of the shadow that’d cast on the land below!

    “Tut tut, looks like rain…”

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