Science: The Wonderful Professor

Mme. Auguste Piccard put her foot down. Middle-aged professors, she declared, especially her husband, should not risk their lives year after year making record-breaking balloon flights into the stratosphere. To her surprise, Professor Piccard solemnly promised to stay out of balloons.

Why Stop? Mme. Piccard was understandably startled by her husband's easy acquiescence. All through the 1920s Auguste had taught mechanical engineering at the University of Brussels, but his first love was always the free-ballooning he did with his twin brother Jean. After years of practice in conventional balloons, the tall, scrawny professor...

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