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September 23, 1999 – November 6, 2000
Air and Space Museum
601 Independence Ave., SW
Location: Milestones of Flight, Gallery 100, 1st Floor, Center
The gondola from the Breitling Orbiter 3, the 1st balloon to fly around the world nonstop, is on view. After 19 days, 21 hours, and 47 minutes in the air, the Breitling Orbiter 3 and crew -- Switzerland's Bertrand Piccard and Britain's Brian Jones -- landed on March 21, 1999, marking the 1st successful nonstop circumnavigation of the globe in a balloon. The gondola is 20 feet long and 8 feet high, while the balloon itself is the same height as the Leaning Tower of Pisa.