In 2004 saw a new ship constructed
at Cardington in the guise of the latest constructed Lightship
A 60+ in destinctive T Mobile livery
A new Lightship A60 + from
the Operator/Owner The Lightship Group. The main manufacturer
of the parts which were assembled at Cardington being from the
American Blimp Corporation.
Envelope Materials: Technologically
advanced fabrics enhance UV protection of the "envelope,
which carries the structural load and acts as the gas " barrier
Illumination: The airship features a special internal illumination
system comprising of "2, 1,000 watt bulbs allowing the airship
envelope to glow during " nighttime operations"
The ship carried out trial
flights on a perfect flying day of 23rd May 2004
This latest ship will follow
in the line of the fleet of Lightships which have been produced
by the Lightship Group. The
Lightship Group was formed in 1995 as a partnership between Virgin
Lightships - part of Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Group of Companies
- and the manufacturer of the Lightship®, American Blimp Corporation.
The company has approximalty 16 airships in it's fleet today.
Passenger Capacity: 3 plus
pilot or 2 adults & 2 small children plus pilot
Camera Capabilities: "Gyro-stabilized camera mounting capabilities,
providing an " excellent platform for television and video
Range: 425 nm
Endurance: 15 hours at cruise
Cruising Speed: 32 mph
Maximum Speed: 55 mph (with winds in favor)
Power: "Twin, 80-horsepower Limbach engines"
Electrical System: "28-volt, 70-amp system with two, 28-volt,
Fuel Capacity: 74 gallons
Fuel Consumption: 4 gallons per hour (cruising)
Maximum Rate of Climb: "1,600 feet per minute"
Operating Area Diameter: 1000 feet
Flight Configuration: "Day / Night, VFR / IFR, Single Pilot"
Ground Crew: Thirteen