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The Balloon-borne Large Aperture Submillimeter Telescope: BLAST

Truch, M. D. P., Ade, Peter A. R., Bock, J. J., Chapin, E. L., Chung, J., Devlin, M. J., Dicker, S., Griffin, Matthew Joseph, Gundersen, J. O., Halpern, M., Hargrave, Peter, Hughes, D. H., Klein, J., MacTavish, C. J., Marsden, G., Martin, P. G., Martin, T. G., Mauskopf, Philip Daniel, Netterfield, C. B., Olmi, L., Pascale, Enzo, Patanchon, G., Rex, M., Scott, D., Semisch, C., Thomas, N. E., Tucker, Carole, Tucker, G. S., Viero, M. P. and Wiebe, D. V. 2009. The Balloon-borne Large Aperture Submillimeter Telescope: BLAST. Presented at: 213th Meeting of the American Astronomical Society, Long Beach, USA, Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society,

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Abstract

The Balloon-borne Large Aperture Submillimeter Telescope (BLAST) is a suborbital surveying experiment designed to study the evolutionary history and processes of star formation in local galaxies (including the Milky Way) and galaxies at cosmological distances. The BLAST continuum camera, which consists of 270 detectors distributed between three arrays, observes simultaneously in broadband (30%) spectral windows at 250, 350, and 500 microns. The optical design is based on a 2 m diameter telescope, providing a diffraction-limited resolution of 30' at 250 microns. The gondola pointing system enables raster mapping of arbitrary geometry, with a repeatable positional accuracy of 30'; postflight pointing reconstruction to <5' rms is achieved. The onboard telescope control software permits autonomous execution of a preselected set of maps, with the option of manual override. On this poster, we describe the primary characteristics and measured in-flight performance of BLAST. BLAST performed a test flight in 2003 and has since made two scientifically productive long-duration balloon flights: a 100 hour flight from ESRANGE (Kiruna), Sweden to Victoria Island, northern Canada in 2005 June; and a 250 hour, circumpolar flight from McMurdo Station, Antarctica in 2006 December. The BLAST collaboration acknowledges the support of NASA through grants NAG5-12785, NAG5-13301, and NNGO-6GI11G, the Canadian Space Agency (CSA), the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC), Canada's Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), the Canada Foundation for Innovation, the Ontario Innovation Trust, the Puerto Rico Space Grant Consortium, the Fondo Institucional para la Investigacion of the University of Puerto Rico, and the National Science Foundation Office of Polar Programs.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Schools: Physics and Astronomy
Publisher: Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society
Last Modified: 15 Dec 2017 09:04
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/14947

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