Team flies house with balloons in real-life version of Up!

A team of scientists and engineers has succeeded in reproducing the wonderful flying house from the movie Up!, by attaching hundreds of helium balloons to a sixteen-foot-square mock-up of the building.

“We’ve discovered, really, that it’s probably close to impossible to actually fly a real house – but what you can do, as we’ve done here, is actually fly a lightweight house and actually fly it safely with people on board,” says the team.

The project was carried out by a team which included the National Geographic Channel and movie creator Pixar, along with two balloon pilots, engineers, scientists and volunteers.

The house was launched on Saturday from a private airfield in Los Angeles. It was hoisted into the sky by more than 300 weather balloons, each nearly three meters tall and holding an entire tank of helium. It was the largest cluster balloon flight ever.

The house flew for almost an hour, reaching an altitude of over 3,000 meters, and made a safe landing.

There’s a video, here, which will form part of a new National Geographic Channel series, How Hard Can It Be?, to air this fall.