Details of the balloon and launch operations
Launch site:Williams Field, McMurdo Station, Antarctica
Launch team: CNES
Balloon: Closed balloon (over pressure) 8.5 mts
Serial number: -
Flight identification number: SV-21-B
Payload weight: -
Gondola weight: -
Overall weight: 40 kg
The balloon was launched on October 14th, 2005 by hand launched method assisted by a special platform developed for this kind of balloons.
After reach float altitude the balloon envelope burst and the payload parachuted to earth. A few days after, was recovered, refurbished and launched again on a later flight.
Description of the payload or experiment
Responsable institution: CNES / LMD
Principal Investigator: -
This gondola was created to be used exclusivelly for long duration missions onboard MIR or superpressure balloons.
It consists of several sensors to obtain in-situ measurements of atmospheric parameters as pression, temperature and wind speed, coupled with a communication system wich transmits the data obtained to ground via the ARGOS satellite system and a GPS transmiter to obtain accurate position and height data. This elements are encased in a temperature insulated box of prismatic shape similar to the one pictured in the left image (click to enlarge). On top of it are located the ARGOS antenna and in the sides several solar panels that provide power to the onboard batteries.
In the lower part of the gondola is located a ballast system based on liquid nitrogen to control the speed of the balloon in the ascent phase.
Tha absolute pressure values are transmited to ground each minute, and the rest of the data four times each hour. The onboard electronics drives all the communication functions as well a backup flight termination device.
The actual RUMBA gondola is derived from an earlier version, but suffered a great simplification in their assembly and the correction of several design flaws troughout an extensive flight validation program.
Performance in flight and data obtained
This flight was performed on the framework of the Stratéole/Vorcore campaign, aimed at studying the dynamics and transport inside the southern-hemisphere stratospheric polar vortex.
External references and bibliographical sources
- Stratéole/Vorcore campaign Laboratoire de Météorologie Dynamique web site
- Quasi-Lagrangian superpressure balloon measurements of gravity-wave momentum fluxes in the polar stratosphere of both hemispheres Geophys. Res. Lett., 34, L19804, doi:10.1029/2007GL031072, 2007
- Stratéole/Vorcore --- Long-duration, superpressure balloons to study the Antarctic lower stratosphere during the 2005 winter J.Atmos. Ocean. Technol., 24, 2048-2061, 2007