First hot air balloon demonstration, 1783

First hot air balloon demonstration, 1783

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Credit: CCI ARCHIVES/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: First hot air balloon demonstration, French historical artwork. On the 5th of June 1783, the Montgolfier brothers gave their first public demonstration of the hot air balloon at Annonay, France. The brothers had previously tested their theory that hot air could lift a pocket of fine taffeta fabric from the ground, but needed to establish their claim to the invention of flight. Their public witnesses saw the balloon fly for ten minutes, covering 2 kilometres at an altitude of about 2000 metres.

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