The primary objective of the ANtarctic Impulsive Transient Antenna (ANITA) mission is to extend the reach of NASA observatories into the realm of high energy neutrino astronomy to test the fundamental laws of high energy physics and astrophysics. Neutrinos and gravity waves are the only direct astrophysical messengers which reach earth unattenuated through space at all energies. ANITA will probe both the nature of the sources of these extreme particles, and the fundamental interactions of high energy physics at extreme scales.
ANITA, as an Antarctic long-duration balloon ﬂight, observes the Antarctic ice sheet out to a horizon approaching 700 km, giving a neutrino detection volume of near one million cubic kilometers. ANITA will search for radio pulses that arise from electromagnetic cascade interactions of the high energy neutrinos within the ice. Such radio pulses, recently conﬁrmed in accelerator experiments, easily propagate through the ice due to its remarkable radio transparency.