BLAST shortly after launch.
Photo by G. Marsden.
UPDATE: Photo blog
of BLAST-Pol Antarctic Campaign online.
Additional photos on flickr by:
For previous BLAST info, including photos and a press release, see the press page.
For general information about the previous flights, see the flights page.
For the scientific papers including the published maps, see the results page.
The original stated motivation
for building BLAST was:
BLAST, or the “Balloon-borne Large-Aperture
Sub-millimeter Telescope,” will fly from a Long Duration Balloon (LDB)
platform and incorporate a 2-meter primary mirror with large-format
bolometer arrays operating at 250, 350, and 500 μm. By providing the
first sensitive large-area (~0.5-40 deg²) submillimeter surveys
at these wavelengths, BLAST will address some of the most important
cosmological and Galactic questions regarding the formation and evolution
of stars, galaxies and clusters.
BLAST's primary goals are to:
- Measure photometric
redshifts, rest-frame FIR luminosities and star formation rates of
high-redshift starburst galaxies, thereby constraining the
evolutionary history of those galaxies that produce the
- Measure cold
pre-stellar sources associated with the earliest stages of star and
- Make high-resolution
maps of diffuse galactic emission over a wide range of galactic
Through its 3 science flights, BLAST has succeeded in all of these goals!