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TIFR Balloon Facility Mission

The TIFR Balloon Facility is one of the leading balloon launching facilities in the world. The facility has been extensively used by scientists from the National Laboratories and Universities. Several scientists from the USA, Russia, the UK, Japan, Germany, and Italy have also made use of this facility in the past 40 years. The Balloon Facility is also mandated to perform necessary research and development to meet future needs in scientific ballooning and lighter than air systems. The balloon flights conducted by the facility during the last few years are of two types (a) Large volume balloons up to 740,000 m3 with heavy payloads for astronomy experiments and (b) Smaller balloons using lighter payloads for atmospheric sciences and the wind sounding flights up to 43 km altitude The TIFR Balloon Facility Mission is to fulfill the needs of user scientists from all over the country as well as different parts of the world under appropriate collaborative arrangements for dependable flight support through the following activities.

  • Plan and develop facilities and provide operational services to meet the Balloon flight support requirements of the scientific community.
  • Provide consultancy services in the field of scientific ballooning.
  • Design and fabricate the Stratospheric Balloons along with the associated engineering elements required for providing the operational services to the user scientists.

Achievements

Since its inception almost 500 flights have been conducted by the balloon facility staff. We have also supplied large balloons to few groups abroad. The balloon production at the facility is completely indigenous all components, i.e. balloon material, load tapes, end fittings, bonding tape have been developed in-house. The balloon flight support instrumentation at the TIFR Balloon Facility has been regularly updated with several innovations and advanced instrumentation for safe and highly reliable flights and matches with the best available elsewhere.