On Tuesday, Nasa successfully launched a super pressure balloon from Wanaka Airport to conduct near-space scientific investigations.
It was the fifth attempt to get the massive balloon airborne, with previous bids aborted due to bad weather.
The 532,000 cubic metre balloon is expected to circumnavigate the globe about the southern hemisphere.
The aim is for it remain airborne for more than 100 days.
The balloon’s operational float altitude is 33.5km and will be visible from the ground, particularly at sunrise and sunset.
The balloon is expected to fall back to earth in South America.
The current record for a Nasa super pressure balloon flight is 54 days.