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Atmospheric Soundings in Near-Real Time from Combined Satellite and Ground-Based Remotely Sensed Data

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  • 1 U.S. Army Research Laboratory, White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico
  • | 2 Environmental Technology Laboratory, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Boulder, Colorado
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Abstract

A mobile profiling system has been developed that is capable of probing the atmosphere from the surface to over 30 km. The Mobile Profiling System (MPS) combines ground-based instruments, including a five-beam 924-MHz radar wind profiler, a radio acoustic sounding system, and two passive microwave sounders, with a receiver and processor for meteorological satellite data. Software in the MPS produces profiles from the surface to the highest satellite sounding level by combining surface data and profiles generated from the suite of ground-based sensors with those from a meteorological satellite. The algorithms generate soundings of temperature, humidity, wind velocity, and other meteorological variables. The method for combining data from the separate sources is not site specific and requires no a priori information. The MPS has the potential for a variety of applications, including detailed analysis of meteorological variables for research and operations over mesoscale areas, such as regional pollution studies and severe storm forecasting. This paper describes the method for merging data from satellite and ground-based remote sensing systems, and presents results from a series of field tests of both individual sensors and combined soundings. Accuracy of the combined soundings appears comparable to that from rawinsonde with the exception of wind velocity at satellite sounding altitudes. The MPS has operated successfully in several different climates: in the Los Angeles Free Radical Experiment at Claremont, California, and in tests at White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico; Erie, Colorado; Ft. Sill, Oklahoma; and Wallops Island, Virginia.

Corresponding author address: Dr. James Cogan, U.S. Army Research Laboratory, AMSRL-IS-EA, Bldg. 1622, White Sands Missile Range, NM 88002-5501.

Email: jcogan@arl.mil

Abstract

A mobile profiling system has been developed that is capable of probing the atmosphere from the surface to over 30 km. The Mobile Profiling System (MPS) combines ground-based instruments, including a five-beam 924-MHz radar wind profiler, a radio acoustic sounding system, and two passive microwave sounders, with a receiver and processor for meteorological satellite data. Software in the MPS produces profiles from the surface to the highest satellite sounding level by combining surface data and profiles generated from the suite of ground-based sensors with those from a meteorological satellite. The algorithms generate soundings of temperature, humidity, wind velocity, and other meteorological variables. The method for combining data from the separate sources is not site specific and requires no a priori information. The MPS has the potential for a variety of applications, including detailed analysis of meteorological variables for research and operations over mesoscale areas, such as regional pollution studies and severe storm forecasting. This paper describes the method for merging data from satellite and ground-based remote sensing systems, and presents results from a series of field tests of both individual sensors and combined soundings. Accuracy of the combined soundings appears comparable to that from rawinsonde with the exception of wind velocity at satellite sounding altitudes. The MPS has operated successfully in several different climates: in the Los Angeles Free Radical Experiment at Claremont, California, and in tests at White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico; Erie, Colorado; Ft. Sill, Oklahoma; and Wallops Island, Virginia.

Corresponding author address: Dr. James Cogan, U.S. Army Research Laboratory, AMSRL-IS-EA, Bldg. 1622, White Sands Missile Range, NM 88002-5501.

Email: jcogan@arl.mil

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