Paso Robles News|Wednesday, May 22, 2024
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Cloud Lab blimp flies over town 

blimp paso roblesThe world’s largest airship passed through Paso Robles Saturday afternoon on a scientific expedition. The Cloud Lab blimp, also known as Skyship 600, is conducting scientific experiments to study what life forms live in clouds.

The blimp just finished hovering over the skies of Salinas, Santa Cruz and the Monterey Bay. It is heading back to the United Kingdom, where it started its mission as part of a documentary. Over the last month, the blimp has visited eight states, 23 airfields and two oceans.

At noon on Saturday, the huge, white blimp passed over Paso Robles, then Templeton and Atascadero following Highway 101 on its south-bound journey. A local resident said the blimp was “really scaring animals around here.”

Cloud Lab is gathering data for a British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) documentary. A team of onboard scientists is studying insect life, the relationship between trees and the air we breathe, and how hurricanes form.

The 68-foot-tall blimp is powered by a pair of turbo-boosted Porsche engines that can push the blimp to a top speed of 57 mph., KSBW TV News reported.

The blimp is equipped with instruments that will try to collect microbes, including bacteria and fungi, that may live inside of clouds, helping scientists search for life in them, the report says. A blimp this size usually accommodates two pilots and 13 passengers, but on this expedition, it’s packed with computers, experiment hardware, and has room for only eight TV and science crew members.

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About the author: Publisher Scott Brennan

Scott Brennan is the publisher of this newspaper and founder of Access Publishing. Follow him on Twitter, LinkedIn, or follow his blog.