KDLT Home KDLT on Facebook KDLT on Twitter Get the KDLT iPhone App Get the KDLT Android App

Raven Industries Produces Balloons For Google



Bookmark and Share

It was nine months ago that Google contacted Raven Industries in Sioux Falls, about helping them provide internet access to remote areas of the world. Ever since, the company has been hard at work making balloons that will allow them to do it. As we speak, those balloons are on a trial run.

Raven Industries President & CEO Daniel Rykhus said, "Two out of three people on the planet don't have access to the internet. Here in the U.S. and in South Dakota, we take it for granted."

Something that we take for granted is something Google hopes to make a possibility, with the help of Raven Industries.

Rykhus said, "The last nine months, we've rolled up our sleeves and worked collaboratively with Google X and designed a balloon solution that will suit their needs and we've been busy producing these balloons."

Raven Industries has developed and manufactured a 60 foot tall balloon that can carry a package well above where planes can fly, a balloon that can fly high into the stratosphere where there are layers of wind.

"What the Raven Aerostar part of this systems does is basically carry the package to 65,000 feet and holds it at 65,000 feet for up to 100 days and of course, the balloon will float along with the wind so it's not stationary and our technology really provides the lift," said Rykhus.

After that it's up to Google. With the technology they've designed, the balloons will talk to the special internet antennas on the ground. The balloons will also communicate with other balloons which will then talk back to the internet provider. They can even control the path of the balloons as they move through the sky. With the balloons bunched together, they can provide coverage to rural parts of the world.
    
Rykhus said, "This has the potential to, with the networking capabilities, to cover very large parts of the world."

Right now, a team is testing 30 balloons in New Zealand. With this test run, and more to come, Google and Raven hope their network in the sky, will one day become a reality.

When the 100 days is up, the team can navigate the balloons to a certain area to reuse or recycle the parts. If the technology works, people will have access to internet for just a fraction of the price of satellite service. The team from Sioux Falls is expected to return from New Zealand on Wednesday.
< Prev Story Back To Top Next Story >
     

Pair Arrested For Drugs After Theft Of Headbands

Two Rapid City residents pulled over by police for suspicion of stealing a couple of ...

Vandalism Won't Deter Children's Park Fundraiser

Officials at a popular Rapid City children's theme park say ...

SD Farmers Report Hike In Per-Bushel Wheat Prices

South Dakota farmers have reported increases in per-bushel wheat prices ...

AG: Eyes Out For Scams During Holiday Shopping  Nov. 27

Woman Gets Prison In Involuntary Manslaughter Case  Nov. 27

Maker Of Thanksgiving Parade Balloons Hits Record  Nov. 27

Local Store Hours For Black Friday Shopping  story with video  Nov. 27

The Daily Scoop: 11-27-2014  story with video  Nov. 27

A Mother's Secret: Opioid Drug Addiction  story with video  Nov. 26

Thanksgiving Travelers Prepared For Anything  story with video  Nov. 26

Parent On School Break-In: "What's going to be done?"  story with video  Nov. 26

SF Families Receive Home In Time For Holidays   story with video  Nov. 26

Teen Arrested After Early Morning Crime Spree  Nov. 26

Supreme Court: DNA Evidence Lacks For New Trial  Nov. 26

Thanksgiving Dinner: Eating Safely  story with video  Nov. 26

Hospital, SD Settle Over Improper Medicaid Claims  Nov. 26

Man Found Sleeping In SF School Classroom  Nov. 26

Police: 16 Guns Stolen From Sioux Falls Home  Nov. 26

US Agency Threatens To Act Against Air Bag Maker  Nov. 26

State Supreme Court Rejects Taliaferro Appeal  Nov. 26

KDLT News Archive
     

Man Found Sleeping In SF School Classroom

Police are investigating a burglary at a Sioux Falls ...

Teen Arrested After Early Morning Crime Spree

A teenager is facing a number of charges after ...

Police: 16 Guns Stolen From Sioux Falls Home

Police are looking for the person responsible for ...

Nearly 2 Dozen Alco Stores Closing In The Dakotas  Nov. 26

Parent On School Break-In: "What's going to be done?"  story with video  Nov. 26

A Mother's Secret: Opioid Drug Addiction  story with video  Nov. 26

Bold Shoplifters Hit Best Buy Store In Rapid City  Nov. 26

8 People Indicted In Sioux City Officer Shooting  Nov. 26

KDLT News Archive
     

Stampede win at Fargo

Fargo, ND—A late power play blast from Lucas Buchta proved to be the game ...

Bos leads Coyotes to win at Dome over Wayne State  story with video

VERMILLION, S. D. – The South Dakota men's basketball ...

Jansen, Richter lead Vikes to 7th straight win  story with video

SIOUX FALLS, S. D. – Daniel Jansen scored 26 points ...

Wilber's DWU Tigers unbeaten after 9 games  story with video  Nov. 26

Montana State coach knows Jacks will be tough  story with video  Nov. 26

Eades says speed will be the strength of Herd  story with video  Nov. 26

Scheels Plays of the Week from November 17th-23rd  story with video  Nov. 26

Fuquan likes playing on young Skyforce  story with video  Nov. 25

KDLT Sports Stories
     
Back To Top