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How do hot air balloons float?


This week we have a TPL Kids website visitor who may have been looking up at the skies and saw a hot air balloons floating by (somewhat unlikely, but still possible). 


For this wonder, we’ve found an answer on the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum’s website: 

A hot air balloon uses a burner to heat up the air inside the balloon. The burner is usually fueled by liquid propane. The burner mixes the fuel with air and ignites the mixture, which creates a flame directly underneath the bottom opening of the hot air balloon. Once the air inside the balloon begins to get warm, the balloon will rise. 


So if you ever find yourself hitching a ride in a hot air balloon, be careful of the heat. 

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