Purpose of the flight and payload description


Details of the balloon flight

Balloon launched on: 8/8/1994 at 12:26 utc
Launch site: Lynn Lake Airport, Manitoba, Canada  
Balloon launched by: National Scientific Balloon Facility (NSBF)
Balloon manufacturer/size/composition: Zero Pressure Balloon SF3-459.37-080-NSXCHR-ST
Balloon serial number: W39.57-2-06
Flight identification number: 384N
End of flight (L for landing time, W for last contact, otherwise termination time): 8/9/1994 at 15:03 utc
Balloon flight duration (F: time at float only, otherwise total flight time in d:days / h:hours or m:minutes - ): 23 h
Landing site: 150 km N of Peace River, Alberta, Canada

The CAPRICE experiment was launched from Lynn Lake Airport in Manitoba, Canada at 7.28 local time on the morning of August 8, 1994. After a nominal ascent phase it reached a float altitude about 38.2 km at 11:07. Once at float altitude, the balloon started to move in a westerly direction with a velocity of 10-18 m/s. The position of the payload was monitored during the whole flight by the NSBF using the Global Positional System (GPS). The GPS instrument gave information on the altitude as well as of the latitudinal and longitudinal position. The GPS data was used both to track the payload and to predict possible landing places. In the figure above can be seen the altitude curve as a function of time. The flight altitude dropped during the flight from 38.2 km to 36.3 km.

As long as the payload was in range of the telemetry, commands could be sent directly to the payload and the payload could send data to the ground. When the payload after 18 hours flight got out of range, the control was taken over by a relay station at Ft. Mc Murray, Saskatchewan. At this point, communication from the payload was limited to engineering data but commands could still be sent up to it. Data taking was terminated and all detectors switched off on August 9, 1994 at 8.00 when the payload was running out of battery power. Approximately one hour later the magnet was discharged and at 9.10 the payload was switched off. At this stage the NSBF had full control of the payload and landing preparations started. One hour later, the balloon was detached and the gondola landed by parachute at 11.15, 150 km north of Peace River.

External references

Images of the mission


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