STAY ABREAST : CHICKEN ON THE WING IN ORBIT
KFC announced: Fried chicken in space is the new frontier…
In an apparent drive to show pieces of their bird are from out of this world, KFC launched its Zinger chicken sandwich into space using a stratollite, or a high-altitude balloon named after stratosphere combined with satellite. NASA has some competition with a different full bird colonel.
The sandwich will airlift about 28 and a half miles above the Earth, still less than half the 62-mile marker thought of to be the edge of space. Of course, as commented by the New York Times, it costs a lot less than burning vertical via an orbiting rocket.
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If the chicken flies without a hatch- errr, a hitch, the stratollite balloon and Zinger chicken sandwich will represent the Colonel from above for a minimum of four days. Meanwhile the balloon will record telemetry to assist in future launch ventures for the stratollite’s manufacturer.
KFC is funding the flight of the Zinger, which will mark the balloon’s first multi-day mission, according to Space.com. World View co-founder and Chief Technology Officer Taber MacCallum told the website that the project will benefit both companies.
“This mission offers edge-of-space access to KFC, allowing them to embark upon a one-of-a-kind marketing experiment, while we get to pursue our maiden multiday Stratollite shakedown cruise and open unprecedented access to the stratosphere,” MacCallum said. “It’s a double win.”
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The stratollite launch was streamed at kfcin.space, a web address that expands to yesweareactuallysendingachickensandwichto.space, according to the Times. KFC has hatched lots of plans to promote the four-day trip, including dropping a single coupon on the ground.
The information gathered during the trip will help World View perfect future balloons, which are designed to travel long distances or hover over one spot on Earth for long periods like a drone. The stratollites may soon be used to monitor natural disasters, provide Wi-Fi service in remote areas or other services, World View representatives told Space.com.
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Poynter told reporters on Tuesday she was amused when KFC approached their company. “We had a good chuckle,” she said, according to Space.com. “We thought it was quite funny. But after we thought about it for a minute, we all decided it was incredibly cool.”
KFC sneak-previewed the voyage last month in a commercial featuring Rob Lowe as Colonel Sanders. “The time has come to explore beyond our known horizons to push KFC’s spicy, crispy chicken sandwich to new heights,” he said in the ad. “Sure, there’ll be questions. Like, ‘why?’”