Prince Albert's airport is located 6km east of the city at an elevation of 427 m and is named for Floyd Glass, who learned to fly in the late 1930s, then served as a military flying training instructor during the Second World War. Postwar, he was the first general manager of the Saskatchewan Government Airways and then founder of Athabaska Airways, which still exists under the name "Transwest Air".
The airport provides a lighted runway of 1525 m with asphalt surface and a grass runway of 686 m. Air service is provided by several companies doing routes throught Canada.
First stratospheric balloon missions launched from Prince Albert took place in the 1950's decade mainly by a research group of the University of Chicago. The group performed studies on cosmic radiation.
After these first isolated almost three decades would pass before the balloons returned to the site thanks to the National Scientific Balloon Facility (NSBF) from the United States which started again with balloon launches in Prince Albert about 1985.
In both cases, the main reason to choose the site was that several balloon-borne scientific experiments in the time were aimed to try to capture charged particles so the payloads needed to be flown as far north as possible towards the north magnetic pole, in an area where the earth's magnetic field less affected the incoming particles. The great difference between the first missions of the 50's and these ones -aside the bigger size of the NSBF's balloons) was the operational philosophy: the objective was to launch the balloons and let the winds take them west toward the Peace River area in Alberta for recovery.
Nevertheless, after the last launches in 1989 the NASA balloon program ceased to use the airport for these activities and moved their north location operations far to the east, to Lynn Lake, Manitoba, wich offered a better location from the point of view of the scienfitic results.
Table of balloons launched from Glass Field Airport, Prince Albert
|Date||Hour||Flight Duration||Experiment||Payload landing place or cause of the failure|
|9/11/1957||~ 4:10 cst||F 11 h||EMULSION PACK - PRINCE ALBERT PROJECT||--- No Data ---|
|8/13/1987||2:02 utc||10 h 30 m||PBAR||40 miles N of North Battleford, Saskatchewan, Canada|
|8/15/1987||1:27 utc||14 h 40 m||ALICE (A Large Isotopic Composition Experiment)||20 miles N of Vegreville, Alberta, Canada|
|8/21/1987||20:00 local||22 h||LEAP (Low Energy Antiproton Experiment)||2 miles WSW of Mapple Creek, Saskatchewan, Canada|
|8/25/1987||1:40 utc||---||LEE (Low Energy Electrons)||12 miles S of Coronation, Alberta, Canada|
|8/26/1988||2:17 utc||---||HEIST (High Energy Isotope Spectrometer Telescope)||25 miles E of Trochu, Alberta, Canada|
|8/28/1988||11:50 utc||---||SOFIE (Scintillating Optical Fiber Isotope Experiment)||3 miles ESE of Malta, Montana, US|
|9/4/1988||13:59 utc||8 h||EXAM (EXtragalactic AntiMatter)||8 miles NW of Mistatim, Saskatchewan, Canada|
|8/31/1989||1:25 utc||19 h 8 m||SMILI (Superconducting Magnet Instrument for Light Isotopes)||35 miles NE of Prince Albert, Sasktachewan, Canada|
|9/5/1989||14:39 utc||8 h||MASS (Matter Antimatter Superconducting Spectrometer)||100 miles ENE of Prince Albert, Sasktachewan, Canada|