The National Scientific Balloon Facility (NSBF) incorporated BiTMICRO
Networks' flash drive solid-state disk (SSD) solutions for use in NSBF
research, engineering and operational support. BiTMICRO's E-Disks have
been incorporated specifically into NSBF's new balloon flight systems.
The NSBF is a NASA facility that provides the services of launching
high altitude research balloons, tracking and recovering the
scientific experiments suspended beneath them for universities and
NASA centers from all over the world.
BiTMICRO's first generation E-Disk flashdrive SSD based on patented
FlashBus technology offers sustained random read and
write transfer rates of up to 68 megabytes a second and random access
times of less than 48 microseconds. The E-Disk's flash drive storage
capacity ranges between 128 megabytes and 77 gigabytes.
Each E-Disk flashdisk solid state drive device is configured to have
the same form, fit and function as hard disk drives (HDD), but without
the need for large power heat dissipation, noise protection and
environmental hardening. They are offered with SCSI, IDE or Fibre
Channel interface in 2.5-inch and 3.5-inch HDD form factors.
The E-Disks, utilizing BiTMICRO's FlashBus technology, are fully
compatible with Linux, SolarisTM Operating Environment (Solaris OE),
Microsoft Windows, MacOS and LynxOS using standard drivers. They also support
AIX, FreeBSD, HP-UX, IRIX, NetBSD, OS/2, QNX, VxWorks, SCO Unixware and
OpenServer, Solaris OE x86 and Tru64.
The NSBF Palestine, Texas, Facility provides complete balloon operations
services and engineering support to the United States and foreign
scientific communities. The services provided include inflation,
launching of the balloon, tracking and recovery of the payload, and
telecommand and data retrieval with reliable electronics systems.
Some of the NSBF areas of engineering support are the design of balloon
systems, research in balloon materials, electronics design, gondola
design and thermal analysis. Also included are power system design,
instrumentation design and integration, and recovery system design.
Some types of research for which balloons are used are Cosmic Ray
studies, Gamma Ray and X-Ray Astronomy, Optical and Ultra-Violet
Astronomy, Infrared Astronomy, Atmospheric Sciences, Magnetospherics
and Micrometeorite Particles.
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