Purpose of the flight and payload description

The objective of the flight was to test a heavy duty balloon with a payload of 1.2 tons to a flight altitude of 30 kilometers. This test involved the heaviest load and the highest flying altitude carried out by the Chinese balloon program in recent years.

Main goal is to transport in the near future heavier payloads to near space for scientific experiments, drop tests of large-scale drones and to serve as launch platform for scientific rockets from the stratosphere.

Aditionally was tested in flight a stellar sensor.

This balloon flight has been carried out under the umbrella of the Honghu Special Project (Near Space Science Experiment System) a strategic pilot technology program launched by the Chinese Academy of Sciences on March 2018. It focuses on the exploration and study of the near space environment, and relies on multi-type platforms to carry out the comprehensive detection of the near space with the most complete range of parameters possible.

Details of the balloon flight

Balloon launched on: 9/30/2022 at 7:30 local time
Launch site: Dachaidan district, Qinghai Tibet Plateau, China  
Balloon launched by: Aerospace Information Research Institute (AIR-CAS)
Balloon manufacturer/size/composition: Zero Pressure Balloon 180.000 m3
End of flight (L for landing time, W for last contact, otherwise termination time): 9/30/2022 at 10:05 cst
Balloon flight duration (F: time at float only, otherwise total flight time in d:days / h:hours or m:minutes - ): 2 h 24 m

The balloon was launched from Dachaidan, at 7:29 cst in the morning on September 30, 2022. After a nominal ascent phase it reached 30 kilometers of altitude at 9:22 cst, and entered at leveled flight at 32.16 kilometers three minutes later. The payload was separated from the balloon at 9:35 cst and after 30 minutes of descent it landed in good shape at 10:05 cst. The payload was succesfuly recovered the same day.

The balloon was launched from the Dachaidan area of Haixi Prefecture, in Qinghai Province, China at 9:30 local time on October 4, 2022. After a nominal ascent, the balloon reached a float altitude near 30 km where the Coronagraph conducted continuous observations of the corona for 5 hours, and obtained nearly 20,000 white-light photos of the corona. This was the first time that the international heliophysics community has conducted white-light observations of the inner corona at such an altitude.

External references

Images of the mission


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