Around-the-world helium balloon build begins in Bristol

Fedor Konyukhov with his son, Oscar, and their translator Image copyright Cameron Balloons
Image caption Fedor Konyukhov (centre) wants to attempt the challenge next summer

Construction of a helium balloon to challenge the record for a non-stop flight around the world has begun.

Russian adventurer Fedor Konyukhov, 64, has committed to the trip in 2016 and signed-up Cameron Balloons in Bristol to design and build his equipment.

His attempt will begin in Northam, Australia, at some point next summer.

In 2002, American businessman Steve Fossett achieved the feat in just under 15 days, but Mr Konyukhov wants to beat the record by two days.

The design and build for Mr Konyukhov will be similar to that used by Mr Fossett, but with more modern materials and technology.

The gondola itself will be designed to carry the balloon's control systems, oxygen supplies, flight communication and navigational instruments.

It will also house a sleeping bunk, water supplies, food rations, life-saving emergency equipment, first aid supplies and clothing.

Image copyright Cameron Balloons
Image caption The setup will be similar to that used by Steve Fossett in his 2002 trip

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