From about 1956 until 1964, US aeronautics engineers and rocket scientists at the Langley Research Center developed a series of spherical satellite balloons called, awesomely enough, satelloons. Dubbed Project Echo, the 100-foot diameter aluminumized balloons were one of the inaugural projects for NASA, which was established in 1958.
Always thought this was amusing, especially after 2010 made inflatable spacecraft look ridiculous. Not to mention the forgotten Genesis stations in Earth Orbit.
I want one for m backyard.