The PressureScoop™, or Scoop, was invented, developed, and patented by Cameron Balloons. How does it work and what benefits does it offer you?
Wind blowing across the mouth or skirt of a balloon during inflation and tethering creates a zone of low pressure which literally sucks the air out of the envelope, (one way to see this principle yourself is to place a straw in a glass of water and blow across the top – the water will rise in the straw). This is called the Venturi effect, and it is just the opposite of the effect you want.
The unique design of the patented Cameron PressureScoop™ eliminates the problem of the Venturi effect by capturing and funneling wind into the envelope. Wind that blows into the PressureScoop™ is forced up into the balloon, thereby increasing the pressure inside. This ram-effect creates a dramatic improvement during high-wind inflations on open sites. For tethering, commercial pilots find the PressureScoop™ a practical and easy-to-use alternative to sealed pressurizing ‘superpressure’ systems (that cost in excess of $6,000 and require assembly and a power supply), plus the natural pressure generated by the Scoop avoids bursts of extreme pressures which injure fabric strength or cause excessive stress in the envelope. Cameron Balloons with the Scoop can be tethered in winds up to 15 m.p.h.
The Scoop allows the Cameron to inflate without shelter, providing more options for take-off sites and increased inflation and tether frequency.
In free-flight the Scoop prevents wind shears from interfering with the burner’s effectiveness, regardless of the direction of the shear, and allows a free flow of oxygen to the burner virtually eliminating the problem of flame-outs.
The Scoop’s configuration allows a clear view from the basket upward along the envelope through all 360 degrees — the increased field of view makes flying more enjoyable and it’s useful for keeping track of other nearby balloons.
And finally, the Scoop does not cause the envelope to become aerodynamically unsound during rapid ascents or descents.