Press Release

Fourteen mile high billboard

By SpaceRef Editor
June 2, 2005
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On May 21st, a high altitude balloon platform was flown to the edge of space.  This mission, named Away 26, was flown by JP Aerospace of Rancho Cordova, California. In addition to it’s scientific and research duties, Away 26 served as a billboard at the edge of space.   “Some companies like to advertise on race cars, I like to use the planet Earth”. Says John Powell, President of JP Aerospace.

Image: Billboard at the edge of space: GP Deva, a unique line of botanical mists, essential oils and herb tea products for health and beauty.

With soaring interest in Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic, Star Wars and orbital tourism, space is rapidly becoming the next marketing frontier.  “Companies are looking for ways to get above the over crowded field of advisements”,  states Powell. “There are a lot of race cars and basketball stars out there, but, not too many spaceships, they get noticed.  The field is wide open”.

The vehicle flew for two hours and forty minutes to an altitude of 77,905 feet above Black Rock Desert in Nevada, USA.  This flight was part of the Airship to Orbit (ATO) program.   ATO is a plan to build large airships that will fly directly to space.  Away 26 tested radio and computer systems for the orbital airship.

Away 26 was the eighty-sixth mission flown by JP Aerospace.  JP Aerospace is an independent space program staffed by volunteers dedicated to bringing space travel to everyone.

More information and pictures available at

Contact: John Powell

Tel: (916) 858-0185


SpaceRef staff editor.