Airship Measurements of Aerosol Size Distributions, Cloud Droplet Spectra, and Trace Gas Concentrations in the Marine Boundary Layer

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  • 1 Remote Sensing Division, Naval Research Laboratory, Washington, D.C.
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The use of an airship as a platform to conduct atmospheric chemistry, aerosol, and cloud microphysical research is described, and results from demonstration flights made off the Oregon coast are presented. The slow speed of the airship makes it an ideal platform to do high-spatial resolution profiling both vertically and horizontally, and to measure large aerosol and cloud droplet distributions without the difficulties caused by high-speed aircraft sampling. A unique set of data obtained during the demonstration flights show the effect that processing marine boundary layer aerosol through stratus clouds has on the aerosol size distribution. Evidence of new particle formation (nucleation of particles) was also observed on about half the days on which flights were made.

The use of an airship as a platform to conduct atmospheric chemistry, aerosol, and cloud microphysical research is described, and results from demonstration flights made off the Oregon coast are presented. The slow speed of the airship makes it an ideal platform to do high-spatial resolution profiling both vertically and horizontally, and to measure large aerosol and cloud droplet distributions without the difficulties caused by high-speed aircraft sampling. A unique set of data obtained during the demonstration flights show the effect that processing marine boundary layer aerosol through stratus clouds has on the aerosol size distribution. Evidence of new particle formation (nucleation of particles) was also observed on about half the days on which flights were made.

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