NASA: Sixth attempt at balloon launch fails

The wind was again unsuitable for launching the balloon at the latest scheduled launch on Friday. NASA will continue to assess the weather and make its seventh attempt on Saturday.

Written by: IANS
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Wellington, April 21: High surface winds scuttled NASA's sixth attempt at launching a stadium-sized super pressure balloon from Wanaka in New Zealand on Friday.

"The wind speed was below our limit for a time, but unfortunately picked back up at a speed that would not support a launch on Friday. We were close once again in our processing, but the winds didn't set up in the end," said Gabe Garde, mission manager for the 2017 Wanaka Balloon Campaign.

Wind halts NASA's sixth attempt to launch SPB from Wanaka. Photo credit: NASA

The balloon and its science payload was expected to drift north east and begin a 100-day journey around the world.

The balloon is designed to carry a pioneering telescope to detect ultra-high-energy cosmic rays from near space.

The purpose of the flight is to test and validate the SPB technology with the goal of long-duration flight at mid-latitudes.

IANS

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