Balloon-Borne Anisotropy Measurement (BAM)
BAM is designed to measure the anisotropy of the
cosmic microwave background (CMB) at intermediate angular scales. The
novelty of BAM lies in using a cryogenic Fourier Transform Spectrometer
as a receiver. BAM flew in 1996 and 1998 from the what was then called
The National Scientific Balloon Facility (NSBF)
in Palestine, Texas. After the Columbia Space Shuttle tragedy, NSBF
was renamed The Columbia Scientific Balloon
Facility. Below are some links to images showing flight preparations
2 September 1998 - We flew on August 25. A successful flight
with 5 hours at float.
The instrument was recovered with minimal damage (The crush pads actually crushed!)
The label on the balloon box (not a child's toy)
Notice the weight and volume of the balloon. NOTE: MCF stands for millions of cubic feet.
Seconds after launch.
From the bottom of the instrument to the top of the balloon measures about 1000 ft!
The NSBF personnel carefully monitor the
status of the balloon.
Smiles from part of the BAM team after a long flight.
23 August 1998 - We rolled out to the launch pad today and got through
our instrument checkout, but then the wind picked up a little too much and
the launch was scrubbed. We hope to try again tomorrow evening.
Some pictures from the aborted launch attempt:
26 August 1998 - Almost flight ready. Pictures from last week below.
CMB groups at NSBF.
Groups measuring the anisotropy of the CMB have taken over NSBF!
The picture show members of the BAM, Maxima and Boomerang experiments.
This is a picture of the BAM instrument as it appeared before its first flight
in July 1995.
You can click on the thumbnail image to get a larger image.
Last updated: July 2002