Nina Background

The NINA experiment represents one of the most important steps of an extensive research program dedicated to the study of the nuclear and isotopic components of cosmic rays, and to antimatter detection in space. The whole program is carried out by the WiZard collaboration together with Russian partners, and makes use of balloon-borne, satellite and Space Station missions. This collaboration, gathered around Prof. Robert Golden who first discovered antiprotons in space, was born for a program of antimatter research.
Many balloon-borne experiments have been performed by the WiZard collaboration in the last ten years, utilizing typical detectors of elementary particle physics. MASS 89, MASS 91, TS93, CAPRICE 94 and CAPRICE 98 have provided important results on the antiparticle-particle ratio and on the energy spectra from 1 GeV to 50 GeV for antiprotons, and from 500 MeV to 20 GeV for positrons. Also relevant have been the measurements of primary proton and helium spectra, and those of positive and negative muon fluxes at different atmospheric depths, important for solving the atmospheric neutrino puzzle.
NINA is a part of the Russian-Italian Mission (RIM) research program, and represents the RIM-1 mission. The first steps (RIM-0.1 and RIM-0.2) were the SilEye-1 and SilEye-2 experiments, performed on board of the Russian MIR station. The SilEye detectors consisted of silicon sensors able to study the radiation environment inside the MIR and the nature of particles producing the "light flashes" seen by astronauts in darkness conditions.

The RIM-2 mission is PAMELA.
PAMELA, a permanent magnet core facility with a variety of specialized detectors, represents a state-of-the-art effort addressing the core of the investigation of the cosmic radiation: origin and evolution of matter in the galaxy, search for antimatter and dark matter of cosmological significance, understanding of origin and acceleration of relativistic particles in the galaxy. With its ability to study the charge, mass and energy spectra of the cosmic rays with unprecedented precision and sensitivity, PAMELA can make observations which will extend the measurements performed with the balloon borne and satellite CAPRICE and NINA experiments. PAMELA will be put in an elliptical orbit at an altitude between 300 and 600 Km, on board of the Resurs-DK1 Russian satellite, in the fall of the year 2002.

Caprice       Caprice 94 flight
Adveev with SilEye1 on MIR station       The astronaut Adveev with SilEye1 on MIR station
Pamela Telescope       Pamela Telescope