High-Resolution Doppler Lidar for Boundary Layer and Cloud Research

Christian J. Grund NOAA/ERL/Environmental Technology Laboratory, Boulder, Colorado

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Robert M. Banta NOAA/ERL/Environmental Technology Laboratory, Boulder, Colorado

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Joanne L. George Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences, University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado

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James N. Howell NOAA/ERL/Environmental Technology Laboratory, Boulder, Colorado

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Madison J. Post NOAA/ERL/Environmental Technology Laboratory, Boulder, Colorado

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Ronald A. Richter NOAA/ERL/Environmental Technology Laboratory, Boulder, Colorado

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Ann M. Weickmann Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences, University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado

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Abstract

The high-resolution Doppler lidar (HRDL) was developed to provide higher spatial, temporal, and velocity resolution and more reliable performance than was previously obtainable with CO2-laser-based technology. The improved performance is needed to support continued advancement of boundary layer simulation models and to facilitate high-resolution turbulent flux measurements. HRDL combines a unique, eye-safe, near-IR-wavelength, solid-state laser transmitter with advanced signal processing and a high-speed scanner to achieve 30-m range resolution and a velocity precision of ∼10 cm s−1 under a variety of marine and continental boundary layer conditions, depending on atmospheric and operating conditions. An attitude-compensating scanner has been developed to facilitate shipboard marine boundary layer observations. Vertical velocities, fine details of the wind profile near the surface, turbulence kinetic energy profiles, and momentum flux are measurable with HRDL. The system is also useful for cloud studies. The HRDL technology, capabilities, and field performance are discussed.

Corresponding author address: Robert M. Banta, NOAA/ERL (ET2), 325 Broadway, Boulder, CO 80305-3328.

Email: robert.banta@noaa.gov

Abstract

The high-resolution Doppler lidar (HRDL) was developed to provide higher spatial, temporal, and velocity resolution and more reliable performance than was previously obtainable with CO2-laser-based technology. The improved performance is needed to support continued advancement of boundary layer simulation models and to facilitate high-resolution turbulent flux measurements. HRDL combines a unique, eye-safe, near-IR-wavelength, solid-state laser transmitter with advanced signal processing and a high-speed scanner to achieve 30-m range resolution and a velocity precision of ∼10 cm s−1 under a variety of marine and continental boundary layer conditions, depending on atmospheric and operating conditions. An attitude-compensating scanner has been developed to facilitate shipboard marine boundary layer observations. Vertical velocities, fine details of the wind profile near the surface, turbulence kinetic energy profiles, and momentum flux are measurable with HRDL. The system is also useful for cloud studies. The HRDL technology, capabilities, and field performance are discussed.

Corresponding author address: Robert M. Banta, NOAA/ERL (ET2), 325 Broadway, Boulder, CO 80305-3328.

Email: robert.banta@noaa.gov

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