Kenyans are now baffled after a google Loon Balloon weighing up to 130 kilograms fell from the sky due to a technical hitch.
The Google Loon Balloon filled with Helium fell on an open filled in a village in Turkana raising questions over their safety.
As part of the partnership between the Kenyan Government and telco company Telkom, the Google Loon Balloons were launched to provide a 4G network in the rural areas in Kenya.
The balloons go up to 20 kilometers from the earth’s surface. They have a lifespan of 180 days and after that, they fall, but at a controlled speed of 12 kilometers per hour.
“The balloon has a self-shelf life and its controlled to descend in a safe place where there is no settlement or human interference but sometimes because of the wind its pushed away from the intended area like in this case, “said an officer who was manning a balloon back in 2017.
Before its drop, Kenya had three balloons in its skies which were being manned by the Tropic Air Aviation Unit through a Plane Finder App.
The balloon is supposed to be recovered so that all the information collected by the balloon is recovered by our experts.
The balloon that fell was identified as HBAL 131 and has been taken back to Nanyuki Airport. The remaining balloons are HBAL 130 and 131. The two are said to have drifted away to the Democratic Republic of Congo.
“High-speed internet is transmitted up to the nearest balloon from our telecommunications partner on the ground, relayed across the balloon network, and then back down to users on the ground.
“We have demonstrated data transmission between balloons over 100 km apart in the stratosphere and back down to people on the ground with connection speeds of up to 10 Mbps, directly to their LTE phones,” said Telkom back in 2017.