Nevada pilots fliy glider to world record in South America
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Pilots from a Nevada glider team flew to record heights above the Andes Mountains in Argentina using only wind as their engine.
The Las Vegas Review-Journal reports an experimental sailplane built by a Minden-based Perlan Project team set an unofficial world altitude record for engineless flight on Sunday, then broke that record by more than a half-mile two days later.
Pilots Jim Payne and Miguel Iturmendi flew the Perlan 2 aircraft to 63,776 feet (19,439 meters) on Tuesday, 3,107 feet (947 meters) higher than Sunday’s flight by Payne and Morgan Sandercock.
That’s about 3 miles (about 5 kilometers) above the highest altitude used by commercial flights.
Payne says at that altitude, “the sky is starting to get dark” and you can see the curve of the Earth.
Information from: Las Vegas Review-Journal, http://www.lvrj.com