Simultaneous launch of Sky Lanterns: how to

by Rob Selen

Simultaneous launch of Sky Lanterns: how to
  1. Demonstrate in advance how to open and light the lantaarn, ask all participants to wait for the start signal.
  2. Make sure that everybody has a lighter.
  3. Have the participants open the lantern.
  4. On 'ready set go' everbody lights his lantern, lighting more angles of the fuel cell makes the lantaarn heat up quicker.
  5. On 90 seconde after the 'ready set go' the signal 'go', participants can liberate the lantern in order to make it fly
Following the above procedure will make a simultaneous launch a success. Attached an example, the commercial for Eni shot a couple of years back at Rome. Art director of the commercial was Cesare Danese, he orders every year sky lanterns for New Years Eve.

Simultaneous launch of Sky Lanterns: how not to

Attached a film shot during an Italian event, festivities in the village. As you will notice there are lanterns that go up and immediately fall down, or don't go up at all. Why is that?

It does not depend on the quality of our lantaarns, the failrate is 0 % if lanterns are used correctly. All is caused by the time people are waiting for the go signal! Seems strange, all it takes is lighting the lanterns simultaneously, right?

Yes, that is correct, but there lies the problem, not all lanterns are lit simultaneously without ta proper procedure. With big groups there are always people that can't wait and think: 'I'm going to lite up mine so I don't have to wait'.

On the other hand there is always someone that lost his lighter, is third in row to light te lantern and after is given the lighter will read the manual and light te lantern.

By the time the second person has the lantern heated up properly, the lantern of the impatient participant will be almost spent. The lanterns to go up and fall down soon after are being launched by impatient lantern launchers.

It is possible to launch lanterns in order to have them fly away all together, all it takes is put in place a procedure and stick to it. But the risk is impatient people in your group that will spoil it.