# Balloon Inflation

I am planning to use an air compressor to inflate a rubber balloon. I need to size the compressor for inflating the balloon, but for sizing the compressor I need the pressure required to inflate the balloon. So, can anyone guide me to calculate the required pressure for inflating a rubber balloon?

• What will you use for your scalar field? ;-) Jul 16, 2013 at 9:04
• What is the thickness of the rubber balloons wall, what is the initial diameter, what is its modulus of elasticity? Jul 16, 2013 at 9:10
• I think the question should be asked as: How to determine the pressure inside a balloon with radius $r$, and elastic modulus $\lambda$? I know a nice-simple answer to this question, which is $P=\frac{2 \gamma}{r}$, where $\gamma$ is the surface tension.
– Ali
Jul 16, 2013 at 9:43
• @twistor59 Bahaha. It's not helped by the fact that I just watched a talk on inflation and did a double take at the question title and "everyday-life" tag. Then I realised this is one of those times where normal people use words differently than I do. Jul 16, 2013 at 15:26

A typical human can exert an over-pressure of ~$9.8kPa$ with their lungs. Given that balloons are designed so that a human can inflate them, I'd say go for a pump that can deliver $10kPa$ of pressure (that's around $1.5psi$ in case you were wondering).