A restaurant owner and kebab enthusiast in Turkish city of Adana decided to mark the 61st anniversary of the first human spaceflight by attempting to send a spicy kebab into the space on Saturday (April 9).
Restaurateur Yasar Aydin, and a small crew of local entrepreneurs fixed a “pipe” kebab onto a styrofoam tray attached to a special box, designed to endure extreme conditions found high above the earth’s surface. The box held a tracking device and a camera so that the crew was able to follow the kebab’s progress.
The box and the kebab tray were launched up into the earth’s atmosphere from Adana in southern Turkey, lifted by a large helium balloon.
After flying for three hours at an altitude of 35 to 40 kilometres (22-25 miles), the kebab-laden balloon burst and fell into the sea off the coast of Turkey’s Hatay province, some 121 km (75 miles) from the launch site.
The kebab was found largely intact in water after its short flight.
Aydin told local media that he will make another attempt to send the spicy dish far above the clouds in the future. He said he hoped to be able to deliver his kebab all over the world, local media reported.
The United Nations marks International Day of Human Spaceflight on April 12 each year, commemorating Yuri Gagarin, the Soviet cosmonaut who became the first human to achieve this on April 12, 1961.
There is no strict boundary defining the beginning of space, but the United Nations has historically recognised a point 100km (66 miles) above the earth’s surface, where conventional aircraft are not able to fly.