Purpose of the flight and payload description
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
Balloon launched on: 8/7/2002 at 1:58 utc
Launch site: Lynn Lake Airport, Manitoba, Canada
Balloon launched by: National Scientific Balloon Facility (NSBF)
Balloon manufacturer/size/composition: Zero Pressure Balloon Raven 40H - 1.130.000 m3 - SF3-39.57-.8/.8/.8/.8-NHR
Balloon serial number: W39.57-3-24
Flight identification number: 506N
End of flight (L for landing time, W for last contact, otherwise termination time): 8/9/2002 at 0:25 utc
Balloon flight duration (F: time at float only, otherwise total flight time in d:days / h:hours or m:minutes - ): 23 h 14 m
Landing site: 18 miles W of Ft. McMurray, Alberta, Canada
Payload weight: 7000 lbs