XLTA Library












Roland Escher in Ran Out of Pink and Brian Boland's Wanda
XLTA Amherst 2005
Photo by Lee Duckett
All Rights Reserved

Gore Calculation Spreadsheets

The Deering Spreadsheet is an implementation of the calulations made by Smalley for designing gores.

Steve Griffin has a modified version that uses metric values.

Slides from Talks

Oshkosh 2008 - Note, this is a 36 megabyte PDF file -- there are lots of pictures. These slides are from a talk given by Dan Nachbar at the EAA AirVenture Forum in Oshkosh on August 1, 2008 on building a hot air balloon. The first half of the talk gives an overview of the wide variety of homebuilt design options to consider. The second half gives a broad strokes picture of the steps involved in doing a first project. The file does not include two video clips that can be found at Mike Collier's website.

The information below may be of interest to folks who want to dig deeper into the science and technology behind LTA design. It is certainly not necessary to do this sort of reading in order to build an aircraft.

Also, be sure to check the LINKS page for a pointers to many other websites with useful experimental LTA inormation.

Classic Technical Works

Airship Design by Charles P. Burgess was originally published in 1927 yet remains one of the fundemental works in the field. The freely-available version here is provided courtesy of the good folks at Archivale. See their catalog for an excellent collection of LTA-related documents.

Click here to download the 11 megabyte PDF file.

The Scientific Ballooning Handbook is a very useful work published by NOAA/NCAR. While focused primarily on high altitude helium designs, this treasure trove contains some top-notch, highly detailed technical analysis of the design of balloon envelopes. The average home-builder doesn't need to refer to this work. However, folks who really like to delve into the details of design and engineering will find lots of good stuff here. This books is a product of the US Government and as such is in the public domain.

Each of these two PDF files is over about a megabyte in size.

Part 1 - This part is of particular interest as it contains the a paper by Justing H. Smalley describing the calculations used in the well known "Smalley Spreadsheet"
Part 2

All information on this site is subject to the following disclaimer.

Unless otherwise noted,
Copyright 2005-2012 Daniel Nachbar
All text and images on this website are freely available
for use and redistribution under the terms of a
Creative Commons License
Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.