In just a few days, on June 21, we are sending a sandwich into space. No, it’s not a joke. It’s a real event, but of course unusual space exploration. If you think the sandwich cannot provide humans with valuable information, you might want to reconsider. It will even take a selfie! We are living in exciting times. Let’s just hope aliens won’t mistake our sandwich for a weapon.
Private spaceflight company World View and KFC, (Kentucky Fried Chicken Menu) have joined forced and will send a chicken sandwich to the edge of space for a four-day trip into the stratosphere, at about 7 to 30 miles off the ground.
The Zinger chicken sandwich is scheduled to take flight on June 21. The launch will be broadcast live online. The sandwich will not stay forever in space. Unless something unexpected happens, the plan is to keep it in a bucket-shaped container and bring back to Earth.
The World View and KFC are aware of that the whole idea sounds somewhat crazy, but this mission provides scientific and technological knowledge we can benefit from in the future.
“When we were first contacted by KFC to send a Zinger into space, we obviously thought it was quite funny,” said Jane Poynter, World View CEO, via email.
“But we quickly realized this was a great opportunity for us to publicly demonstrate our breakthrough Stratollite technology to a large audience while simultaneously financing a significant portion of the vehicle’s development.”
The system is designed to bring small payloads into the stratosphere for months at a time to deliver internet, Earth-imaging, disaster relief and other applications for a fraction of the cost of a typical rocket launch.
“We’re going to learn a lot about long-duration stratospheric flight, while at the same time developing and testing some core systems capabilities that we’ve never had before,” Poynter added.
People will be able to spend some hours in space and admire our planet from up to 30 miles above, suspended under a giant balloon.
But that’s something the company will deal with later. Currently, it’s the Zinger chicken sandwich that has all attention.