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The Flight Test Aspects of the Air-Launched Balloon System (ALBS) Development Program
Abstract: The Air Launched Balloon System (ALBS) development history is traced and the circumstances leading up to planned ALBS flight tests are described, including a report on successful tests of the cryogenic storage subsystem. The theoretical performance of a candidate parachute development system--35-ft (10. 67 m) diameter ring sail drogue, 64-ft (19.51 m) diameter flat circular main chute--is mathematically analyzed using a number of stated assumptions. Contingency arrangements (e.g., use of ballast) and their impact are discussed. Data indicate that the ALBS mid-air deployment concepts require experimental proof-of-concept testing to ensure optimum component selection. Parachute subsystem verification tests planned for the autumn of 1976 at El Centro, Calif., are outlined along with plans for partial and complete ALBS system test drops from a carrier balloon in 1977 at White Sands Missile Range.