The CREAM experiment was carried on this record-breaking balloon. (NASA)
BiTMICRO® E-Disk® flash drive
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The Cosmic Rays Energetics and Mass (CREAM) project is a NASA-sponsored high-altitude balloon experiment led by the University of Maryland in collaboration with Pennsylvania State University, the University of Chicago, and other universities and organizations in Italy, Korea, France, and Mexico.

The unmanned, helium-filled scientific balloon and its CREAM payload was launched from the National Science Foundation's McMurdo Station in Antarctica on December 16, 2004. The objective of the CREAM project was to investigate the composition of ultra-high-energy cosmic rays utilizing the Long Duration Balloon (LBD) vehicle technology developed by NASA.

To provide a storage device for the CREAM project, Penn State used BiTMICRO's solid-state E-Disk flash drive. Throughout the flight, CREAM instruments recorded about 36 GB of heavy nuclei data onto a 43-GB E-Disk flash disk drive. By integrating the solid-state disk storage into the project, engineers were able to maximize data-gathering opportunities in a mission that extended the endurance record of a long-duration balloon from 31 days and 20 hours, to 41 days.

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NASA Tech Briefs Magazine

This article first appeared in the September, 2005 issue of NASA Tech Briefs Magazine.

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