2006 Esrange Balloon Campaign of the Aura Validation Balloon Program


Gondola 1:  FIRS-2 Far Infrared Fourier Transform Emission Spectrometer based at Harvard-Smithsonian Center for

                            Astrophysics (P.I. Ken Jucks)

                   SLS superconducting heterodyne sub-millimeter  limb sounder based at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

                             (P.I. Bob Stachnik)


Gondola 2:  MkIV solar occultation Fourier Transform Spectrometer based at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory  (P.I. Geoff Toon)

                   Ozone in situ photometer based at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory  (P.I. Jim Margitan, remotely from JPL)


Other JPL personnel include Brian Drouin (Azimuth drive, working with SLS and FIRS-2, and photography boy),

Jess Landeros (gondola support and ping pong King), Dave Petterson (MkIV team), Jean-Francois Blavier (MkIV team),

Armin Kleinboehl (MkIV team), and Bhaswar Sen (Ozone instrument and MkIV team, and positive thinking expert).


Campaign update:  1 February 2006:  The campaign was cancelled after 2+ weeks in the field due to a poor and warm Arctic vortex this winter.  Both gondolas were ready to fly and waiting for the first good opportunities.  We hope to return in 2007. 


Photos and Movies (taken by Brian Drouin of JPL).


Thumbnails and links to photos by Brian Drouin (JPL) taken during campaign (and trip to) Esrange near Kiruna, Sweden.


Timelapse “movies” taken by Brian during the Gondola 2 compatibility,

And during sunrise and mid-day on the 30th of January. 

Warning: these take a bit of time to load and may not work well on slow computers.


Other links for this campaign


Balloon launch will be through the NASA National Scientific Balloon Facility (NSBF) and the Swedish Space Corporation (SSC).

Follow this NSBF link for the real-time video cam of the balloon launch pad at Esrange (disabled when campaign is over).

Follow this NSBF link for the payload tracking once the flights are in progress (disabled when campaign is over).