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Auguste Piccard. Portrait of the Swiss physicist Auguste Piccard (1884-1962). Piccard is best known for his record-breaking balloon ascents and deep sea dives. Although he taught in Switzerland and the USA, he spent the main part of his career in Belgium, where he was Professor of physics at Brussels Polytechnic from 1922 to 1954. He designed a pressurized cabin to be attached to a balloon. In this he made an ascent to a height of 18 kilometres, a record at the time. Piccard also invented a diving craft, the bathyscape. In its first test it reached a depth of about 1500 metres.
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