Purpose of the flight and payload description

The main objective of the instrument is to make observations of the Cosmic Microwaves Background anisotropies.

The heart of the ARGO experiment is a Cassegrian Telescope, the primary mirror has a diameter of 120 cm and was built in alluminium alloy for a total weight of 35 Kg.

The secondary mirror is also in aluminum alloy and can be wobbled with an amplitude of 4º with respect to the optical axis.

Radiation collected from the telescope is then, splited in 4 cryogenic bolometric detectors.

The telescope is completed by a large thermal radiation shield made using an aluminium skeleton supporting a 10 cm thick glass wool insulation covered with several foils of aluminized mylar. The overall instrument is mounted on a stabilized gondola.

During this flight the telescope observed 63 independent sky fields in Hercules with an angular resolution of 52 min full width half maximum (FWHM).

Details of the balloon flight

Balloon launched on: 8/4/1993 at 18:10
Launch site: Base di Lancio Luigi Broglio, Trapani, Sicily, Italy  
Balloon launched by: Agenzia Spaziale Italiana (ASI)
Balloon manufacturer/size/composition: Zero Pressure Balloon 960.000 m3
End of flight (L for landing time, W for last contact, otherwise termination time): 8/5/1993 at 14:25
Balloon flight duration (F: time at float only, otherwise total flight time in d:days / h:hours or m:minutes - ): 20 h 15 m
Landing site: Near Avila, Spain.
Gondola weight: ~1.500 kgs

The balloon was launched on August 4, 1993 at 18:10 utc by dynamic method using a crane as launch vehicle.

The float altitude of 2.7 mb was reached at 21:00 utc starting to travel over the mediterranean due the west towards Spain.

After a flight of of near 20 hours, the payload was cutdown at 14:25 utc on August 5th, and was recovered near Avila, in Spain.

External references

Images of the mission

ARGO hanging from a crane in the Trapani balloon base.

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