LEWISBERG — There is a $1,000 reward for the return of a NASA ARMAS balloon payload that is believed to have fallen north of Lewisburg on Friday, Jan. 29.
The NASA ARMAS payload was lost from a scientific balloon on Friday, Jan 29. at approximately 10:15 am north of Lewisburg near West Sonora.
The NASA ARMAS payload looks like a shoebox with silver-colored aluminum tape around a one pound box. The antenna wires are for Iridium satellite link. It is approximately 12” x 8” x 6” in dimensions. If found, keep the case sealed to protect the sensitive electronics inside.
The balloon’s flight trajectory shows the payload fell from 60,000 feet once the ballon burst while traveling southeast past S.R. 722 towards Georgetown Verona Road.
The intersection of multiple Iridium signal pings from ARMAS show a likely location north of West Sonora where it fell, though Iridium signals have some uncertainty, meaning the device could be found further south than West Sonora or as far west as Twin Creek.
Areas have already been searched near Georgetown Verona Road and south towards Euphemia Castine Road. The instrument is not moving and is believed to be sitting on the ground where it fell.
This is a NASA scientific project for the purpose of understanding the natural radiation at aircraft altitudes and protecting crew and passengers from long term exposure.
The payload is not dangerous – it only measures radiation and does not create it.
Anyone who has found the payload or has information about the payload can contact W. Kent Tobiska at firstname.lastname@example.org or 310-699-1477 as well as Hank Voss at 765-618-3813.