Café Scientifique @ HanaHaus: Project Loon through the Eyes of a Mechanical Engineer

Bringing Connectivity to the World: Project Loon through the Eyes of a Mechanical Engineer

This talk will give an insider's view on how Project Loon started, the journey it has taken, and where it is headed now after six years of working to bring connectivity to the world. Project Loon was founded as a moonshot at then-Google X, aiming to utilize stratospheric balloons to bring the internet to rural areas and developing countries at a fraction of the cost of satellites.

Operating in the stratosphere is no walk in the park, so come hear from one of the mechanical engineers who has worked to solve the hardware challenges facing the endeavor. From designing the system to launching, steering, and recovering a flight, we'll cover the entire life of a Loon balloon and conclude with an open discussion and question/answer time.


Kevin Anderson is a Mechanical Engineer at X, Inc (formerly Google X) who has worked on Project Loon for the past 4 1/2 years. He previously worked in battery engineering at Tesla after starting his career in the medical device industry. A Stanford graduate and mechanical generalist, he has a unique perspective on some of the spectacular challenges to operating in the stratosphere.

Café Scientifique

Café Scientifique is a place where anyone can come to explore the latest ideas in science and technology. The Café provides a forum for debating science issues outside a traditional academic context. We are committed to promoting public engagement with science and to making science accountable - all spoken in plain English. There is no admission charge to attend our events. Building on its great success outside the United States, Café Scientifique Silicon Valley is the first such Café on the West Coast.  We meet monthly to discuss a variety of science topics.