Purpose of the flight and payload description
The objective of the flight was to perform a extreme high altitude balloon mission using a new balloon developed at the National Balloon facility of India. The mission was carried out in the framework of the High Altitude Balloon Development Project (HAA).
The balloon had a volume of 61.000 cubic meters, weighed 31.0 Kilograms and was manufactured using the indigenously developed ultra-thin polyethylene film with a thickness of 3.8 micro meters. It carried a payload of 7.9 kilograms comprising a Single Card Tele-Command with integrated Electronic Timer, Radio Trans receiver (Data Modem), Air traffic Control Transponder, Mobile telephony GSM-GPS for last leg tracking, upward looking video camera and two GPS-sondes for navigation and measurement of atmospheric parameters like pressure, temperature and humidity with a 4.3 meter diameter parachute weighing 3 kilograms for the safe recovery of instruments after the flight.
Details of the balloon flight
Balloon launched on: 1/7/2014 at 4:02 ist
Launch site: TIFR National Balloon Facility, Hyderabad, India
Balloon launched by: National Balloon Facility, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research
Balloon manufacturer/size/composition: Zero Pressure Balloon 61.013 m3 - (3.8 µm ultra thin film)
Balloon serial number: MS-17112
Flight identification number: HAA-03
End of flight (L for landing time, W for last contact, otherwise termination time): 1/7/2014 at 7:04 ist
Balloon flight duration (F: time at float only, otherwise total flight time in d:days / h:hours or m:minutes - ): 3 h 2 m
Landing site: Near the town of Husnabad, Andhra Pradesh, India
Payload weight: 8 kg
Overall weight: 39 kg
The balloon was launched at 4:02 hours IST of January 7th 2014 from the National Balloon Facility in the outskirts of Hyderabad, India. The balloon reached the maximum altitude of 51.661 kilometers in 2 hours 9 minutes and established a new high altitude record for India. The flight was terminated at 7:04 IST by telecommand. All the instruments performed well during the flight. The payload safely landed near Husnabad town, Siddipet mandal, Karimnagar district, Andhra pradesh and the recovery crew recovered the payload intact.
This was the first time that a regular stratospheric balloon has penetrated the Mesosphere in India.