Sky-high fun. The history of launch of balloons in Ukraine

Заоблачное удовольствие. История запуска воздушных шаров в Украине

The history of Aeronautics in Ukraine began at the end of the XVIII century

The title of the capital of Ukrainian balloonists claimed by two cities — Kamianets-Podilskyi and Lviv.

Tell me who flew balloons in the old days and how you can get off the ground these days, writes Irina Pustynnikova in No. 14 of the journal of April 15, 2016.

Eighteenth century, the age of the Enlightenment changed man’s understanding of the world and their place in it. The myth of Daedalus and Icarus become a reality: in November of 1782 in the French town of Annonay brothers Joseph and Etienne Montgolfier first raised in the air silk shell a volume of one cubic meter.

On 14 December of the same year the smoke from burning straw, wool and paper helped to launch the balloon in three cubic metre over a paper mill, father Montgolfier brothers Vidalon. Next time was April 25, 1783-St — then a huge ball rose from the garden of Montgolfier in the air on a hitherto unheard of height of 400 m.

To hide their experiments with flights to two major manufacturers were on with no hands, and on 4 June 1783 in the square of Cordelero the first people in Annonay witnessed a novel spectacle. Something like a huge lampshade made of paper and fabric with attached basket full of smoldering straw and wool, off the ground and flew. The brothers drew up a report-an appeal to the Paris Academy of Sciences was asked to recognize the world’s first creators of the “flying machine”.

Flying bride

Europe quickly embraced the air fever. The experiments of the brothers Montgolfier was covered extensively by the media of the time — on the Ukrainian lands, too, have heard of them.

Heard and Professor of physics at Lviv University Ignat martinović, a man of acute mind, and colorful biography. A Croat by origin, who considered himself a Hungarian, traveled Europe, studied in several universities, visited a Franciscan monk and even the Abbot of the monastery, then became a staunch atheist, wrote 16 scientific papers, served in the Austrian intelligence, was interested in drama and military strategy.

And martinović were invented. A lot. Especially a lot — in Lviv, worked from 1784 to 1791. There Martinovich became friends with a doctor of medicine by Nepomuceno Anthony Herman, the former Royal physician. Together they created an automatic burner for liquid fuels is no longer necessary to take to heaven with a basket of straw. Invented by Martinovic and Herman method used in Aeronautics and in our days.

Заоблачное удовольствие. История запуска воздушных шаров в Украине

The experiments of the Montgolfier brothers launched the era of Aeronautics

One burner was not enough — in January 1784-nd scientists decided to design their own balloon model. The first flight was planned without passengers, as well as the Montgolfier brothers. The project was funded by method of a kind of crowdsourcing — January 21, notification of the Lviv newspaper published a description of the future of the balloon and its technical characteristics. The purpose was to raise funds for its creation.

And the money was required considerable — red 400 PLN. Only a thin silk fabric Chinese air membrane area of 700 sq. m. had more than 1 thousand meters Later, the fabric had to impregnate a mixture of linseed oil and beeswax to make the material airtight and watertight.

It was planned that the weight of the ball will be 23 kg prior to treatment with a mixture of 45 kg and after. The whole shell was going to cover the protective net weight of 24 kg. the ball was attached to a nacelle weighing up to 180 kg, calculated on two passengers. The burner weighed 36 kg, fuel for her — a little more than 12 kg, the rest of the equipment scored 64,2 kg. And now with all this good had to take off.

Meanwhile, the scientists sent flying the smaller models. On 4 March 1784 at five o’clock in the afternoon many local people came to the Park Biel to stare at the miraculous wonder. A huge ball, movable warm air rose into the sky a hundred meters in just a minute. To monitor the burner there was no one, she soon went out and the balloon descended slowly to the ground.

The second flight was not so smooth: the burner is ignited the shell — and that, all ablaze, fell from heaven. Good that the passengers this time again was not. Who knows, maybe it is because of this celestial catastrophe, the balloonists did not manage to raise enough funds for the construction of the ball of your dreams. And, perhaps because of foolish and hot nature martinović.

Herman later published in the Lviv newspaper notifying the Doctoral series of articles notes on a balloon, in which talked about the impact of flying on the body and health. In short — the effect is terrible, flying is not worth it. More — over the earth, man will poison air, electrified atmosphere, fast movement of air. And it would be nice to forbid fill the balloons with hydrogen. He’s dangerous, could poison passengers.

And not only passengers. The physician believed that the inflation of the balloon can ruin all standing near the Orb, and eventually the whole County and even the whole country. Herman predicted that soon there will be machines of 100 thousand or even 1 million cubic feet.

Biased for Aeronautics reacted not only failed aeronaut. For example, some seriously feared that, thanks to balloons there will be more cases of abductions of young girls — what to avoid, of course, it does not.

People over Lviv

But the reactionaries do not stop. The balls flew over all of Europe, especially in France, the birthplace of Aeronautics. The second place on number of flights kept the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. Next came England, Italy and the Netherlands.

Krakow to watch the first flight of a balloon in the winter of 1784 came the last Polish king Stanislaw August Poniatowski. He also visited and the first manned flight over Warsaw on 10 may 1789

Lions don’t see balls eight years. While in June 1792-in the city tour has not arrived even one Croat — Marinovich, one of the first aeronauts-businessmen in history. The Governor gave permission sassy entrepreneur to launch a balloon. To start chose Yablonovskii gardens, where it is often carried out theatrical performances (now petrushevycha square). Wanting to see the flight of the balloon was so much that I had to install additional seats.

The first thing Marinovich lighted torch in his version it was a mini-stove, in which blazed blue with some sort of fluid. At noon he gently moved the device in a circle, on which was pinned a shell, and something resembling a small bellows began to pump the air from the burner.

This is now the process of inflating balloons takes an average of 15 minutes, the citizens were waiting for a good half hour, before the shell is started to inflate the cheeks, straighten up and try to escape into the sky. Soon it was able to read some inscriptions — history is silent. Perhaps it was advertising — a practice familiar to the modern mind.

Half an hour passed quickly for the audience, they applauded and responded to everything. And unprecedented happened: the Orb strapped to a gondola for passengers and ballast. The musicians of the military orchestra of the Grenadier regiment of the pianists accompanied the show, playing marches.

Two in the afternoon Karanovic opened the gondola door, bowed to the audience and gave several commands. Hit the timpani, and the orchestra fell silent. In the ringing silence of the gondola off the ground, and the audience exploded with shouts, whistling and applause. Over Lviv for the first time has risen. He was all of the above, now and crown Park’s trees remained under the gondola, that was hard to consider it the aeronaut, who waved to the townspeople…

Marinovich was the first merchant of Aeronautics, which saw lions, but not the last. 23 August 1796 Pyromancer Terzi, who called himself a pupil of the famous aeronaut Johann Georg Stuwer, made the first night flight of a balloon.

Ball for Pasha

The only in Ukraine monument to the aeronauts installed in Kamianets-Podilskyi. A funny little man in a cloak and wig with curls trying to break away from the walls of the Old fortress with the help of a balloon that holds. Sculpture of authorship of Sergei Clamatory opened in 2014, in conjunction with the event to the 230-th anniversary of Aeronautics in the city. Five years earlier on the wall all the same famous fortress was a memorial plaque.

And it was so. In the fall of 1780 in Kamenets garrison was sent to a Junior officer of artillery Benedict Maher. From Podolsk of the capital, he often wrote in the Polish capital-in Warsaw he lived three brothers, including Anthony, a famous physicist, a meteorologist and a historian.

In June 1784-th second Lieutenant Mager for a few days was released from service. He had an important job: he helped build the balloon. Just returned from Istanbul Prince Charles-William de Nassau-Siegen. German-Russian adventurer and Admiral a native of Picardy, owned on the tail of the estate in the village Tynny near Dunaivtsi, because I have, and in Kamenetz-Podolsk.

The Prince de Nassau and his companions — Oberleutnant de La Porte, the American Littlepage and captain Mokronowski, as was written in Warsaw Maher, “brought a more detailed method of manufacturing balls”. So, attempts to fly were made in the city to visit de Nassau-Siegen. The Prince saw in Paris, the experiments of the brothers Montgolfier and “detail showed the way it [the ball].” The commandant of Kamenets fortress Jan de Witte met the news with enthusiasm and provided the company assistant.

And he wrote in Warsaw: “Otherwise it is impossible to say, but what we managed well. … I can praise that worked with the most. So we launched from Kamyanets one paper at 23 feet long, and a width of 19 feet, which rose up to three thousand cubits (about 1 km) and fell a quarter of a mile to the river Smotrych. Second, we ran over Khotin, for Pasha, large, round, 33 feet in length and width, and looked with horror do not fall in the center of the city, so did the Turks fireworks. Were this balls to the warm air”.

And another quote: “I already know how to do balloons, so you can expect me in Warsaw earlier than expected”. An elegant allusion to long-distance flights, which, alas, in the eighteenth century did not take place.

From letters Magera know that the city is designed and the balls smaller “very thin film” that “was filled with fetid gas from vitriolage alcohol and iron filings”.

The commandant of the fortress Jan de Witt fanatically interested in Aeronautics and didn’t give up trying to climb into the clouds and after de Nassau-Siegen went. It is the means of the General rector of the Kamenets school Kasprowicz and cadet Jakubowski several months created his version of the Montgolfier.

A ball of double-sized paper 15 m in diameter with a gondola and with a total weight of 400 kg in November 1784 he was ready to fly. When its creators began to inflate the balloon, the paper did not withstand and burst. With a hole in the shell to fly did not dare, so lonely balloon rose to a height of 240 m, where he snapped completely and fell to the ground.

Kamenetz handwritten newspaper mentions that “on August 21, 1784 fool over here by re-running the ball, in which the Kasprowicz, the physics teacher, a soldier of the grenadiers were told to swim in the air, but nothing came out, the ball was burned, and those who wish to fly on earth”.

In the sky do not let go

And Kamyanets-Podilskiy and Lviv in those days were fairly large cities, but to take to the skies and dreamed in the province. In September 1786 Dr. Arman launched the balloon in the estate of Prince Lubomirski in Chechelnik the bracław Voivodeship (now Vinnitsa oblast).

But the subjects of the Russian Empire flying balls are not entertained. In April 1784 the Empress Catherine II signed the “Decree on the prohibition to release balloons in the warmer months — from March 12 to December 12 because of the risk of fires.”

During the slightly more liberal Alexander I had the idea to use balloons for army — France its first aeronautic company started in 1794-m. But it was limited to a few test flights.

Aeronautics in the Empire kept local Kulibin: the staff physician Kashin in October 1805 will rise over the earth, Muscovite Elias will pitch the balloon and will fly in August 1828. In those years in heaven allowed only the nobility, because daring escapade of a commoner tried not to see, — history has not preserved even the name of the Queen of heaven. But the known names martinović, Mahera and Kasprowicz — the pioneers of Aeronautics in our land.

The montgolfiers of the XXI century

Today to take to the skies over Western Ukraine

And in Lviv, and Kamianets-Podilskyi today for tourists there are some balloons. But you’ll only ancient Kamenetz: flying over the center held. However, there is a beautiful and romantic alternative to the castles of Lviv region: often fly over the strongholds in Svirzh and Olesko. To contact the pilots of the Galician Association of balloonists on their website or by phone (067) 380-15-08. Works of the Lviv club of Aeronautics, Leafly — (067) 794-55-33.

Fly on the balloons in Kamenetz-Podolsk can be any day, under suitable weather conditions. To start can prevent the strong rain and wind. Pictures and information about the closest ballooning Championships or the fiestas can be found on the website of the aeronautical society of Triglav Jael calling by phone (067)676-27-17,(066)266-27-17. Flight on the ball — not cheap, but the experience is worth it. For example, one hour flight over the Kamianets-Podilskyi will cost of three 7 thousand UAH.


This material is published in No. 14 of the magazine Reporter on April 15, 2016. Reprinting of publications of magazine Correspondent in full is prohibited. With the rules of use magazine Reporter, published on the website Корреспондент.net can be found here.