The Cool Factor On This One Goes Up To 11

Ok, for this project you’ll need

  1. A robust, flyable model sailplane
  2. A GPS receiver
  3. A homebrew computerized autopilot (that goes in the model sailplane)
  4. A drogue parachute for landing
  5. A very-high-altitude helium weather balloon.

Why? Well, you’ll be building an RC glider that gets launched at 85,000 feet (that’s more than 16 miles up).

For comparison, commercial airliners usually fly at about 35,000 feet; 85,000 feet is generally the domain of ultra-exotic military aircraft like the SR-71 and the U-2.

And speaking of the SR-71, it seems that the operation manual has been declassified and posted on-line.