First Super Pressure Balloon for 2023 Campaign Lifts Off from New Zealand

A scientific balloon is to the right, and appears as a plastic, upside down teardrop. A tube attached to the top of the balloon leads down to the ground. A crane to the left holds a large payload structure with many solar panels.
A super pressure balloon partially inflated as it’s being prepared to launch from Wānaka, New Zealand, April 16, with the SuperBIT payload.
Credits: NASA/Bill Rodman

NASA’s Scientific Balloon Program successfully launched its football-stadium-sized, heavy-lift super pressure balloon (SPB) from Wānaka Airport, New Zealand, at 11:42 a.m., Sunday, April 16 (7:42 p.m.. April 15 in U.S. Eastern Time), on a mission planned for 100 or more days. Over the next couple hours, the balloon will begin to fully inflate as it floats up to an altitude of 110,000 feet. Read more.

Track the progress of the flight at the following link, which includes a map showing the balloon’s real-time location, at:
A scientific balloon fully inflated floating in the sky. It appears plastic and clear against a clear blue sky.
A super pressure balloon fully inflated after it launched from Wānaka, New Zealand, April 16 local time. The launched carried the SuperBIT payload.
Credits: NASA/Bill Rodman