Begin typing your search above and press return to search.
The new Parliament
access_time 25 Sep 2023 11:49 AM GMT
Amid India-Canada diplomatic row
access_time 22 Sep 2023 4:00 AM GMT
K Radhakrishnan
access_time 21 Sep 2023 4:00 AM GMT
Womens quota in legislatures
access_time 20 Sep 2023 5:24 AM GMT
Extended Congress CWC meet raises hopes
access_time 19 Sep 2023 5:11 AM GMT
Schools breeding hatred
access_time 14 Sep 2023 10:37 AM GMT
access_time 16 Aug 2023 5:46 AM GMT
Remembering the Teachers
access_time 5 Sep 2023 6:24 AM GMT
Homechevron_rightTechnologychevron_rightNASA plans to launch...

NASA plans to launch balloon flight in New Zealand

NASA plans to launch balloon flight in New Zealand

Wellington: US space agency NASA is planning to set a record for the longest ever flight for a scientific balloon to be launched in New Zealand next month.

NASA's Balloon Programme team was on the cusp of expanding the envelope in high-altitude, heavy-lift ballooning with its super pressure balloon (SPB) technology, an agency statement said on Friday.

NASA experts are in the South Island resort town of Wanaka, preparing for the fourth flight of a 532,000-cubic-metre balloon, with the goal of an ultra-long-duration flight of up to 100 days, Xinhua news agency reported.

The launch of the pumpkin-shaped, football stadium size balloon was scheduled for sometime after April 1.

The SPB was made from almost 8 hectares of polyethylene film and would ascend to a nearly constant float altitude of 33.5 km.

The balloon would travel eastward carrying a 1,025 kg payload of tracking, communications and scientific instruments, and was expected to circumnavigate the globe once every one to three weeks, depending on wind speeds in the stratosphere.

The current SPB flight duration record is 54 days and was set in 2009.

Longer duration flights enabled longer observations of scientific phenomena, the ability to survey more sources, and more time to observe weak or subtle sources, while such mid-latitude flights were essential for making observations at night, a requirement for certain types of scientific investigations.

These two aspects combined with the relatively low-cost of balloon missions could make the SPB a competitive platform for a number of scientific investigations that would otherwise need to launch into orbit.

As the balloon travels around the Earth, it might be visible from the ground -- particularly at sunrise and sunset.

Show Full Article
Next Story