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About Us

About Us

The Stratospheric Ballooning Association (SBA) is a non-profit organization that was incorporated in the State of Iowa in 2013.  The SBA is here to promote and educate about high altitude ballooning and the many applications it has in education, research, and personal enjoyment.


The SBA began as an idea at the 2010 Academic High Altitude Conference that was being held at Iowa State University in Ames, IA.  Discussions were made about forming a group that helps to promote and provides education about high altitude ballooning.  Dr. Don Takahara suggested the group be formed and then suggested that Mr. Matthew Nelson, the SBA’s current president, and co-founder, run the group.  From there the group started collecting information and held meetings to formalize the organization.  At first, the group was named the National Near Space Alliance (NNSA).  In 2012 it was decided to change the name to the Stratospheric Ballooning Association and in 2013 the non-profit organization was registered in the State of Iowa.

Mission Statement

The SBA’s mission is to support those engaged in high altitude ballooning by promoting the field to others, mentoring practitioners, and facilitating collaboration.

Vision Statement

The SBA’s vision is to promote high altitude ballooning through empowering its members and public on high altitude ballooning, to encourage collaboration with all those that wish to participate and to advance the science, technology, engineering, operations and policy of high altitude ballooning.