Sunday, January 24, 2016

SUPER Pressure Suit Test Today!

Longer report later, but today a fantastic test proving out a few final technological solutions! On board were scientific balloon builder and industrial designer Mathew Lippincott, professional mariner W. Magruder and yours truly. I have tremendous -- and well-founded -- belief now that we can build the 3rd-generation suit for high-altitude flights. You can always find the most recent updates on twitter.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

New Iceland Drawing

Wrapping up an essay for BBC3 Radio recently, I was reminded of visions of stars refelected in glacier ice in Iceland. Here's a drawing, and a sketch of some text describing the scene, for my Iceland book.

"I picked my way through canyons and towers of ice and gravel, my supply sled scratching or screeching as its skis crossed pumice or ice. My feeble headlamp bobbed along. Most of the light was in the sky, the moon illuminating tilted terrains that extended into darkness, their geometries not always making sense in my half-seen world. A thousand other celestial lights burned in the sky--planets, stars, galactic clusters, meteorites... The brightest were reflected by the black ice, the photons from those stars bouncing up at my eyes after--well, who-knew how many millions or billions of years in transit? On such cold, clear nights I was stripped down by the terrain and such thoughts, stripped right down to being a life form trying to get from one point to another. It was a pleasant simplification."