Opportunistic sensing with recreational hot-air balloon flights

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  • 1 KNMI, The Netherlands
  • 2 Wageningen University, The Netherlands
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Abstract

We report about a new third party observation, namely wind measurements derived from Hot-Air Balloon (HAB) tracks. At first we compare the HAB winds with wind measurements from a meteorological tower and a radio acoustic wind profiler, both situated at the topographically flat Cabauw observatory in the Netherlands. To explore the potential of this new type of wind observation in other topographies, we present an intriguing HAB flight in Austria with a spectacular mountain-valley circulation. Subsequently, we compare the HAB data with a Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) model during 2011-2013 and the standard deviation of the wind speed is 2.3 ms−1. Finally we show results from a data-assimilation feasibility experiment that reveals that HAB wind information can have a positive impact on a hindcasted NWP trajectory.

Corresponding author address: KNMI, De Bilt, Netherlands. E-mail: cisco.de.bruijn@knmi.nl

Abstract

We report about a new third party observation, namely wind measurements derived from Hot-Air Balloon (HAB) tracks. At first we compare the HAB winds with wind measurements from a meteorological tower and a radio acoustic wind profiler, both situated at the topographically flat Cabauw observatory in the Netherlands. To explore the potential of this new type of wind observation in other topographies, we present an intriguing HAB flight in Austria with a spectacular mountain-valley circulation. Subsequently, we compare the HAB data with a Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) model during 2011-2013 and the standard deviation of the wind speed is 2.3 ms−1. Finally we show results from a data-assimilation feasibility experiment that reveals that HAB wind information can have a positive impact on a hindcasted NWP trajectory.

Corresponding author address: KNMI, De Bilt, Netherlands. E-mail: cisco.de.bruijn@knmi.nl
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