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Doppler Radar Probing of the Clear Atmosphere

K. S. GageAeronomy Laboratory, ERL/NOAA, Boulder, Colo. 80302

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B. B. BalsleyAeronomy Laboratory, ERL/NOAA, Boulder, Colo. 80302

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In the past few years, sensitive Doppler radars have been used to probe the clear atmosphere from the boundary layer up to stratospheric altitudes. Routine Doppler radar observations are now attainable over a wide range of frequencies at virtually all altitudes in this height range. Although a number of these systems operate at UHF (300–3000 MHz), sensitive Doppler radars have recently been developed that operate at VHF (30–300 MHz). These new systems employ large, inexpensive antennas constructed of phased arrays of dipole elements. This paper surveys recent developments in the use of both VHF and UHF Doppler radars for probing the clear atmosphere and presents design considerations for new radar systems.

In the past few years, sensitive Doppler radars have been used to probe the clear atmosphere from the boundary layer up to stratospheric altitudes. Routine Doppler radar observations are now attainable over a wide range of frequencies at virtually all altitudes in this height range. Although a number of these systems operate at UHF (300–3000 MHz), sensitive Doppler radars have recently been developed that operate at VHF (30–300 MHz). These new systems employ large, inexpensive antennas constructed of phased arrays of dipole elements. This paper surveys recent developments in the use of both VHF and UHF Doppler radars for probing the clear atmosphere and presents design considerations for new radar systems.

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