High Quality Content by WIKIPEDIA articles! Balloons for X-ray astronomy provide a platform for science instruments to study the atmosphere, the universe, the Sun and the near-Earth and space environment. Balloon flights can carry instruments to altitudes of up to 40 km above sea level, where they are above as much as 99.7% of the Earth's atmosphere. Unlike a rocket where data are collected during a brief few minutes, balloons are able to stay aloft for much longer. However, even at such altitudes, much of the X-ray spectrum is still absorbed.
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