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Deployment and Operation of the RAAVEN small Unmanned Aerial System (sUAS) in Support of NOAA Science during ATOMIC

ARTICLE AND FIGURES PROVIDED BY GIJS DE BOER (ESRL/PSD/CIRES/CU) AND JANET INTRIERI (ESRL/PSD)

Kenneth Vierra 0 1955 Article rating: 3.5

Supported with UAS Program Office funding, a team from the University of Colorado Boulder will deploy the RAAVEN sUAS from Barbados between 19 January and 17 February 2020. Launch and retrieval will occur from the shore at a field and the adjacent beach in Morgan Lewis, Barbados RAAVEN miniFlux measurements can directly contribute to advancing our scientific understanding relevant to NOAA forecasting efforts across weather and climate scales. Specifically, information on the vertical distribution of dynamic (momentum) and thermodynamic fields (heat fluxes), spatial and temporal variation of PBL height, formation and maintenance of tropical clouds, and ABL stability can be used to evaluate boundary layer and cloud parameterizations. This to examine and better understand the physical processes supporting the organization of tropical clouds and to provide guidance on model physics development. Improving model physics is one of the major goals articulated in NOAA’s Unified Forecast System (UFS) Goals and Priorities document. 

Observing Atmospheric Fluxes with UAS (miniFlux)

Article and Figures Provided By: Gijs de Boer (ESRL/PSD/CIRES)

Kenneth Vierra 0 849 Article rating: No rating

Understanding the transfer of heat and momentum between different layers of the atmosphere and the underlying surface is critical for improving our weather and climate forecasts. Scientists at NOAA’s Physical Sciences Division (PSD) and the University of Colorado’s (CU) Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) are working to develop, test, calibrate and deploy the compact, lightweight (1.2 lbs) miniFlux sensor system (Figure 1). This miniaturized instrument, which is supported by NOAA’s UAS Program Office, can reliably collect these measurements from unmanned aircraft systems (UAS).  Deploying this lightweight package on UAS over difficult-to-sample regions of the Earth can provide perspectives on these important processes in ways not previously possible.

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