The 0.5 metre diameter telescope on board of SuperBIT, Superpressure Balloon-borne Imaging Telescope, will be launched in April 2022.

You might remember when in September 2019 we posted a news about the revolutionary SuperBIT Superpressure Balloon-borne Imaging Telescope – final test flights, which demonstrated the telescope extraordinary pointing stability.
The 0.5 metre diameter telescope on board of SuperBIT, entirely designed and manufactured by Officina Stellare, is a project of the Durham, Toronto and Princeton Universities teaming up with NASA and the Canadian Space Agency.
SuperBIT will fly above 99.5% of the Earth’s atmosphere, carried by a helium balloon the size of a football stadium.
The telescope is scheduled to launch from Wanaka, New Zealand, next April 2022. It will circumnavigate the Earth several times, imaging the sky all night, then using solar panels to recharge its batteries during the day.
This is kind of a genius project, we are very proud of: not only new balloon technology makes visiting space cheap and easy, but the possibility to return the payload to Earth and relaunch it, means that it can be continually reconfigured and upgraded. When deployed SuperBIT should obtain high-resolution images rivalling those of the Hubble Space and scientists are already working to the next 1.5m SuperBIT generation.
Ph credits: Steven Benton, Princeton University

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