New Delhi, Sep 9 (IANS): The aerostat, or helium-balloon, touted to be the star attraction at the opening ceremony of the Oct 3-14 Commonwealth Games was unveiled amidst heavy rain at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium Wednesday.
The aerostat, worth Rs.40 crore, is 80m by 40m and 12m high. It was raised to a level of 10m above the base Wednesday and will be raised to its maximum height of 30m in the next two days.
Organising Committee chairman Suresh Kalmadi said the aerostat will be able withstand the rains, which has obstructed preparations for the Games.
"The aerostat is no ordinary balloon but a piece of technology, piece of art. Even during rains, it stands tall with no problems at all," Kalamadi said in a press release.
The aerostat will be multi-purpose, with video content being projected on it, which will include animation and graphics and will be synchronised with the events that will take place during the opening ceremony.
The projection will be high-resolution and multi-dimensional. Some of the live events will also be projected on the aerostat. The aerostat will lift scenic elements and create dramatic effects.
"The USP of this aerostat is that it is used for projection in 360 degrees so every person in the stadium can view the entire effect of the aerostat," Viraf Sarkari, director of Wizcraft International Entertainment, said.
There will be light fixtures with mirrors which will be fixed on the belly of the balloon and this will emit a warm glow.
Competition Manager for Athletics, C. K. Valson, said the athletic track at the stadium has received Class 1 certification, making it the first one in India to receive it and among the very few in Asia.
He said the ongoing rains would not affect the track and that it has been covered completely. He said he expected new records to be made on this track.