Progress of super-pressure balloon development: A new “tawara” concept with improved stability
H. Fuke, N. Izutsu, D. Akita, I. Iijima, Y. Kato, J. Kawada, K. Matsushima, Y. Matsuzaka, E. Mizuta, M. Namiki, N. Nonaka, S. Ohtahttp://academic.research.microsoft.com/io.ashx?type=5&id=49276027&selfId1=0&selfId2=0&maxNumber=12&query=
The super-pressure balloon (SPB) has been expected to be a flight vehicle that can provide a long flight duration to science. Since 1997, we have developed the SPB. Now we are at the phase of developing an SPB of a practical size. In 2009, we carried out a test flight of a pumpkin-shaped SPB with a 60,000m3 volume. The undesirable result of this flight aroused us to resolve the deployment instability of the pumpkin-shaped SPB, which has been known as one of the most challenging issues confronting SPB development. To explore this deployment issue, in 2010, we carried out a series of ground tests. From results of these tests, we found that an SPB design modified from pumpkin, named “tawara”, can be a good candidate to greatly improve the deployment stability of the lobed SPB.