India's atmospheric exploration and cosmic ray studies programmes were the main boosters of the birth of ballooning activity. It was way back in the 1940's that Dr. Homi Jehangir Bhabha from the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) became a pioneer in the field, sending scientific equipment to altitudes of 25-30 km using clusters of up to 60 hydrogen filled rubber balloons. The aim of these early experiences was to study the secondary cosmic radiation through the use of emulsion plates to record the track left by these particles interacting with our atmosphere.
Over the years, the evolution in complexity of the experiments forced an increase in the payload's size which became progressively larger and heavier. Thus, in March 1956, another pioneer in the ballooning arena, Prof. Bernard Peters from TIFR started a research program for the manufacture of plastic balloons which were able to transport these bigger payloads to nearly 35 km of altitude. The effort was under the direction of Prof. M. G. K. Menon, with the technical guidance of Prof. G. S. Gokhale. As a result of the work they had done, the first successful polyethylene balloon flight took place in April 1959 from the Osmania University Campus in Hyderabad, a place that would become the main balloon launch site in the decade that followed.
Applications are invited for the posts that tenable at TIFR Balloon Facility, Hyderabad.
The TIFR Balloon Facility is one of the leading balloon launching facilities in the world. The facility has been extensively used by scientists from the National Laboratories and Universities. Several scientists from the USA, Russia, the UK, Japan, Germany, and Italy have also made use of this facility in the past 40 years. The Balloon Facility is also mandated to perform necessary research and development to meet future needs in scientific ballooning and lighter than air systems.
Prof. K. Maiti, Dean -NSF, TIFR, Mumbai - Chairperson
Prof. D.K.Ojha, Chairperson, DAA, & TIFR Balloon Facility Committee
Prof. S.K. Ghosh, Senior Professor, TIFR, Mumbai
Prof. D. Narayana Rao, Ex-director, NARL and