Loon shutting down

[Originally posted to LinkedIn 9/23/2021, migrated to DocBug 2/10/2022.]

As many of you know, Loon is shutting down. We landed our final balloon a few months ago, and while a few folks are still helping with the wind down, most of us (including myself) have moved on. Delivering wireless internet via high-altitude balloons was always a high-risk moon shot, with huge potential and equally huge technical, logistical and business challenges. It’s a testament to the talent of everyone who worked on the project that we got as far as we did.

Over the years I was able to work on some amazing projects, including designing and building Loon’s first mission control system, developing AI algorithms for steering our balloons, and modeling stratospheric winds for our simulation system. And since simulation and mission control touched on so many aspects of the project I also got to collaborate with people working on everything from balloon envelope design to the evolution of storms in the stratosphere to using free-space optics to communicate between balloons.

I’m spending the next few months working on some independent projects while I explore what’s out there. I’ve always been drawn to projects with multi-disciplinary problems, particularly when the solution (and even the problem) isn’t entirely clear. If you know something that might be a good fit, or just want to chat and catch up, drop me a line.