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Barrage Balloon

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WW1 British Spotter Balloon

A British Spotter Balloon used during World War I

A barrage balloon is a large balloon tethered with metal cables, used to defend against aircraft attack by damaging the aircraft on collision with the cables, or at least making the attacker's approach more difficult. Commonly the designs were kite balloons, having a shape and cable bridling which stabilize the balloon in windy conditions, allowing operation in higher winds than a spherical balloon. Some examples carried small explosive charges that would be pulled up against the aircraft to ensure its destruction. Barrage balloons are not practical against very high-flying aircraft, due to the weight of a very long cable.

France, Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom used barrage balloons in the First World War. Sometimes, especially around London, several balloons were used to lift a length of "barrage net", in which a steel cable was strung between the balloons and many more cables hung from it. These nets could be raised to an altitude comparable to the operational ceiling of the bombers of the day. By 1918 the barrage defenses around London stretched for 50 miles, and captured German pilots expressed great fear of them.[1]

Spotter Balloons were barrage balloons employed as aerial platforms for intelligence gathering and artillery spotting.[2]

Battlefield 1Edit

Barrage Balloons are featured in Battlefield 1.

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