Purpose of the flight and payload description

It was a large-area high-sensitivity hard X-ray telescope, operating in the energy range 15-300 keV and is formed of two different arrays: scintillation detectors (NaI, 5.5-mm thick and actively shielded) with a total area of 2700 cm2 and high-pressure xenon gas multiwire proportional counters with a total sensitive area of 900 cm2.

This detector is mounted on a gondola wich includes an elevation drive system and azimuthal control.

The instrument takes their name from the institutions that made it (MIlano FRAscati SOuthampton) and also is referred in certain balloon literature as the PALLAS gondola. Hence the double title.

In this flight was made a observation of the Crab Nebula as an in-flight calibration source of the telescope and then was scanned a region of the sky containing the Seyfert galaxy NGC 4151 wich was studied over the photon energy range 15-300 keV.

Details of the balloon flight

Balloon launched on: 7/29/1986 at 5:30 utc
Launch site: Base di Lancio Luigi Broglio, Trapani, Sicily, Italy  
Balloon launched by: Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales (CNES)
Balloon manufacturer/size/composition: Zero Pressure Balloon Winzen - 800.000 m3
End of flight (L for landing time, W for last contact, otherwise termination time): 7/30/1986
Balloon flight duration (F: time at float only, otherwise total flight time in d:days / h:hours or m:minutes - ): 19 h 32 m
Landing site: Near Sevilla, Spain
Campaign: ODISSEA 86  
Overall weight: 4172 kgs

The balloon was launched on July 29, 1986 at 8:30 local time.

After a succesfull release of the balloon assisted by the launch crane, the balloon started traveling from Sicily to Spain crossing the Mediterranean.

Finally after near 20 hours of flight at a height of 39 km, the payload landed near Sevilla,in Spain.

External references

Images of the mission


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