Air Force Balloon

RAAF Balloon

Hot air balloons are one of the earliest forms of aviation – they were even used for surveillance during World War I. Today, Air Force has two balloons which are based in Canberra. Operated by Central Flying School, the balloons often travel to regional or remote communities that don’t have an airport. These visits are an opportunity for members of the community to meet Air Force personnel and also serve to promote the professionalism of the RAAF, introduce young people to aviation and inspire an interest in the Royal Australian Air Force.

The balloons can launch from small open spaces, such as school ovals, which makes them a regular visitor to schools around Australia where they deliver aviation-related education programs. The balloons conduct regular free-flight training in the Canberra region.

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Application for Air Force Support

The application form can be downloaded from here


The new Air Force shaped Balloon – The Facts

The latest Air Force Balloon was unveiled on Friday 11th March 2016, and is a bold visual statement of the Royal Australian Air Force in the 21st century – agile, adaptive and reflecting our Air Force Values.

The bespoke design features silhouette images of Air Force aircraft superimposed on a unique 1,574-panel balloon envelope with separate sections for a helmet, visor, oxygen mask and oxygen hose.

Manufacturer Cameron Balloons, Bristol, UK
Role Promote a positive Air Force image
Identifier VH-BZU
Height 28m
Breadth 20m
Volumn 3398m3
Max takeoff weight 1088 kg
Min landing weight 544 kg
Climb / descent 2.54 m/s (maximum)
Payload Varies with conditions
Speed Prevailing wind speed
Range Determind by wind speed and direction
Endurance Approximately 3 hours
Ceiling 3048m (higher with life support systems)



Calendar of Events


12 Mar 16 - 20 Mar 16 Canberra Balloon Spectacular
25 Mar 16 - 28 Mar 16 Leeton Sunrice Festival
3 Apr 16 Canberra Airport Open Day
21 Apr 16 - 22 Apr 16 Junior Legacy Florance Foundation Visit Camp, Canberra
1 May 16 Wings Over Illawarra
19 May 16 - 22 May 16 Gold Coast International Marine Expo

For Teacher For Students

For Teachers For Students Lower primary:
Primary/middle years:
Science themes:


Air Force Balloon Interactive

Balloon Game Test your skill and play the fun Air Force Balloon interactive. Navigate your way around the countryside and see how high you can get your score.