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Q & A: A vacuum balloon?

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Most recent answer: 06/08/2008
Q:
If helium and hydrogen provide lift for airships by weighing less than the surrounding air, would a vacuum provide greater lift?
- Ed (age 47)
Canal Fulton, Ohio, USA
A:
Very interesting question.    The answer is yes.   Unfortunately it's not a very practical idea.  The reason is that a large vacuum volume would require an enormous support structure that would be able to resist the external atmospheric pressure.  This support structure would have to be "lighter than air".  

LeeH

(published on 06/08/2008)

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