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The edge of space, among the great spaceflight accomplishments of our age, what probably won’t be included is KFC sending a Spicy Zinger burger into the heavens. That’s not to say it’s not happening, because unbelievably it is. As PR stunts go, it’s just that it sounds rather ridiculous. Actually, very ridiculous. Having said that, as a promotional stunt, KFC have already won. Because plenty of people are writing about it. Yes, us included.

KFC have teamed up with high altitude ballon maker World View to get this chicken sandwich to the edge of space, where it will spend four days in the stratosphere. Kentucky Friend Chicken announced its marketing ploy earlier this year in a video featuring Rob Lowe as Colonel Sanders.

“We choose not only to launch KFC’s new Zinger sandwich in a $5 fill-up here in America, but to take it to the edge of space,” Sanders tells the nation, continuing, “Can you actually launch KFC’s wold-famous chicken Zinger sandwich into space? The answer is, ‘We certainly hope so. Our entire marketing campaign depends on it.’”

Behold – KFC’ Edge Of Space ‘Zinger Mission 1′

To get this finger lickin’ burger into space KFC will send it up in a weather balloon which will carry it up to around 80,000 feet above sea level. And although this is probably the highest a chicken burger has ever been, it’s not technically space, just the edge of space. Which was pointed out by Twitter account NASA watch.

 

Although, KFC didn’t seem to care too much about this technicality.

When Will The Zinger Mission 1 Mission Happen?

Kfc Edge Of Space.

Regardless, this chicken edge of space mission is due to take place on 21 June and will be broadcast live just like the moon landing. And, sure, although it is of course a shameless promotional stunt, it also does have implications for aerospace engineering. Because according to the Associated Press the launch will be the “longest controlled stratospheric balloon flight with a commercial payload in history” and the chicken sandwich “will return to earth and bring back telemetry data.”

Not only that, but for World View it’s also an opportunity for them to test out their new piece of kit. “This was a great opportunity for us to publicly demonstrate our breakthrough Stratollite technology to a large audience while simultaneously financing a significant portion of the vehicle’s development.” say the company.

Chicken Burger To Be Stratollite’s First Ever Payload

Kfc edge of space 03.

The KFC mission will be the Stratollite’s first ever payload and the first time they will be taking the vehicle into the stratosphere for an extended time, enabling them to monitor it and test how it fares. The vehicle and its payload is lifted into the air by a large balloon and can then be controlled as it rides the wind.

Future uses for it could include monitoring an area hit by a natural disaster, providing internet, doing climate modeling, and improving weather predictions. Because Stratollite can stay over a specific area for days and weeks, eventually they hope for months too powered by solar enegry.

“We’re going to learn a lot about long-duration stratospheric flight, while at the same time developing and testing some core systems capabilities that we’ve never had before,” Jane Poynter CEO of World View says. “For example, this is the first time we’ll be testing our solar power system, which is the on-board, regenerative power system that will allow the Stratollite vehicle to ultimately fly for months at a time without interruption. We’re also developing and testing a real-time HD video downlink system, among other critical systems improvements.”

The company also has plans to send space tourists up into the stratosphere on their Voyager capsule so they can experience the edge of space, which is as yet just an idea but uses similar principles.

But before that, the Zinger burger will float upwards into the edge of space, a definite historic moment for fast food. If it’s a success, maybe they’ll think about sending other items from the KFC menu into the stratosphere in future tests.

KFC’ Space Chicken PR Marketing On Twitter

Check out more about the project/shameless marketing ploy below. And head to World View’s website for more.

 

Photos Of The Edge Of Space Fried Chicken Carrier

The Edge Of Space 08.An illustration of the KFC zinger burger in space

 

The Edge Of Space 07.World View’s Stratollite vehicle

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