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Free Flight Schönefeld 22 JUL 2017

Maristella Svampa


Helianthus Free Flight

Schönfelde,  Germany


travel the world without wind,                    by becoming the wind.

Launch place : Schönfelde.
Date: 22 July
Time: From 7am on 
Sunrise Time: 5:08 Am Sunset Time: 9:12 Pm
Weather: Partially cloudy, 17-27º Main Wind Direction: East Average Wind Speed: 10 Km/h
Field Condition: OkField Options: OkPermissions: Ok

Become lighter than air. That´s our dream, the utopia we are trying to unfold,

In a world made of boundaries, Aerocene  is working toward a demilitarization and decolonization of the sky, to build a community that will take to the air in the spirit of a new era, and raise a new awareness of the air we all breath. This is another attempt to float within the natural rhythms of the Earth and its atmosphere, by observing the ocean above us.


In the middle of a kindly warm German summer, six experimental solar balloons have been tested by representatives of the Aerocene community and the team.

The weather was perfect for the use of another instrument: the inflating bicycle, whose only power source is directly applied human effort. A fan attached to the back wheel filled up the balloons with air, without using any electricity, and it gave us the possibility to watch the balloons becoming bigger and bigger very quickly.

Helianthus and the Explorer Quartet hovered above the grass field for a while, dancing among people, tuning with the Earth beat. After a while however, it was time for the spheres to rest, and the team followed.

“Being balloon is to fly, certainly, but it is more so to float without much haste, perhaps just a little buoyant, maybe even just hovering above the ground, imperceptibly”. 

Peter Adey

Next float up was the black Aerocene Helianthus Explorers duo, chosen to be our free travelers for the day. Equipped with cameras, GPS trackers and an infrasound recorder, they surfed the air above Schönfelde, crossing the ceiling of the clouds and detecting the symphony played by the living particles in the air.

Aerocene Helianthus Explorers traveled 480 km distance, floating in the skies for over 7 hours, reaching 15353 m altitude, all without any carbon, fossil fuels, helium, hydrogen, burners, or engines – using only air currents and the heat of the sun.

Aerocene Helianthus Flight has been one of the longest flight in the history of Aerocene experiments. It has been chased for two days and retrieved by our experts the night of 24.07.2017 in Łączno, Poland. For the team, it was a beautiful surprise to discover that the balloons were already been folded and kept safe by an extraordinary kind family from the village, which realized the importance of the flying sculptures and helped them out.


“Aerocene is a project about friendship, about the relationship between air, universe, humans, sun, animals, plants, planets. It is a project showing how shared enthusiasm becomes the common ground to shared dreams. Where time becomes different, where energy and inspiration are endless resources.

I can only hope that this family will grow even bigger.”

Tomás Saraceno