The campaign consists of one balloon (SPB) during June - July 2012 with balloon flights westwards and landing in Alaska or Canada.
NASA summer campaigns
The first NASA summer campaigns (2005) demonstrated a new long duration, heavy payload balloon capability from the northern hemisphere to the international science community. SSC and NASA combined their resources and experiences to offer significant new opportunities for US and European scientists to fly sophisticated instruments in near space for periods of up to 10 days at very low cost.
Until today the following flights have been performed
AESOP was launched on 2 June 2006 (test flight)
ULDB was launched 11 June 2006
TRACER was launched on 8 July 2006
BLAST was launched on 12 June 2005
LEE, was launched on 17 May 2009
AESOP, was launched on 5 June 2009
SUNRISE, was launched on 8 June 2009
ULDB was launched on 21 June 2009
LEE, was launched on 30 May 2011
AESOP, was launched on 11 June 2011
HiWind, was launched on 14 June 2011
SPB, was launched on 14 August, 2012
The 2012 balloon campaign is a continuation of a NASA long-duration balloon flight programme at northern latitudes. By conducting balloon flights from the Esrange Space Center in northern Sweden to North America, flight of up to 4-6 days can be obtained, an opportunity that is highly required by scientists within the field of astronomy.
The campaign objectives is to launch a 532 000 m3 (at 180 Pa pressure) super pressure balloon. The launch suspended mass is 2555 kg, the float suspended mass is 2273 after 282 kg ballast drop. The comprehensive success criteria are to have a 4+ days float.
The unfavorable weather conditions this summer made the campaign period very long. The NASA Super Pressure Balloon was finally launched at 03:45 UTC on August 14:th. Due to the stratospheric wind breakup the flight was performed as a local Scandinavian flight with a two hour floating time.
Colombia Scientific Balloon Facility (CSBF) has the overall operational responsibility for the campaign activities and they will be supported by a particular project manager and a launch team from the SSC.
Participating organisations/contact persons
Mr Danny Ball, NASA-CSBF, Project manager
Mr Mattias Abrahamsson, SSC, Project manager
CSBF, Colombia Scientific Balloon Facility