Description of the payload
BESS (the Balloon-borne Experiment with a Superconducting Spectrometer) is a joint project of Japanese and US scientists to search for antimatter in the cosmic radiation, as well as measure energy and intensity of less exotic components of the cosmic radiation.
The BESS program has had 9 successful flight campaigns since 1993. The instrument has been modified and improved each year.
Historically, the various versions of the BESS instrument have consisted of large solenoidal thin-wall superconducting magnet, a time-of-flight system of scintillation counter hodoscopes, inner drift chambers (IDC), a jet-type drift particle-tracking chamber and an aerogel Cherenkov counter (which replaced outer drift chambers used in the first flights). All the components are arranged in a horizontal cylindrical configuration with the IDC and Jet chambers located inside the warm bore of the magnet.
Details of the balloon flight and scientific outcome
Launch site: Scientific Flight Balloon Facility, Fort Sumner, (NM), US
Balloon launched by: National Scientific Balloon Facility (NSBF)
Balloon manufacturer/size/composition: Zero Pressure Balloon 1.120.000 m3 - SF3-39.57-.8/.8/.8/.8-NHR
Balloon serial number: W39.57-3-26
Flight identification number: 499N
Balloon and payload failed.
External references and bibliographical sources