Full Fake Solar Panels

Front On June 13, 2017 we dressed bit in all of her fake solar panels to do some scan testing. Because bit needs to point so precisely, very small disturbances can totally upset the system. For this reason, even though we’re flying for a single night and don’t need solar power, BIT flies with fake solar panels to experience the same amount of wind and floppy parts as it will have with real solar panels. I took the opportunity of having BIT fully dressed to take a bunch of photos. […]

Taping and Testing

Night testing With BIT’s pre-launch compatibility test finished, we spent June 8-12 of last year taping up the outside for its final shiny/thermal treatment. We also spend nights testing the telescope, while there are stars to observe. […]

BETTII launch

BETTII The first experiment to launch last year (June 8, 2017) was BETTII (Balloon Experimental Twin Telescope for Infrared Interferometry). We took a break to go and watch. […]

Compatibilty (last year)

Hanging out It’s been almost a year since the disappointing summer/fall of not launching SuperBIT in 2017. I have recovered enough to finally post the photos. We’re also in the field with SuperBIT getting ready to launch again, and I don’t want to get lapped. Plus I’m being pestered/motivated to share these for documentation purposes. On June 8, 2017 We did our pre-flight compatibility test. This means rolling out the highbay as though we would launch and putting everything together. Then we test our system and the CSBF antennas and commanding, and we roll back inside. […]

Reassembly, Shinification.

Javier scacles BIT With upgrades to the experiment complete, it’s time to start putting everything back together. In addition to basic reassembly, it’s time to start giving the experiment its final thermal treatment. This means covering things with various combinations of foam and shiny aluminized mylar. And lots of tape. […]


The telescocpe and I On my return to BIT-land (after needing to spend a few days in Princeton) I find everything disassembled in preparation for upgrades: mainly to the rigidity of the mounting of the inner frame, the telescope inside the inner frame, and the optics box on the backside of the telescope. Plus installing some electronics like the new heater control box, fine guidance controller, and shiny new gyroscopes. […]

SuperBIT Test Flight 2017: The Beginning

Susan fits in the boat, which makes for more convenient alignmnet scoping I arrived in Palestine about a week later than the Toronto crew (professor: Barth, grad students: Javier, John, and Susan, undergrads: Bryce and Michael). They had unpacked and tested everything in the thermal vacuum chamber and were starting to set up. I forgot to pack my camera, but I snapped a few photos on my phone. Most were for technical purposes, but a few are (maybe) of interest to people other than me. […]