Synonyms: 
INTEX-A
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Langley Aerosol Research Group Experiment

Langley Aerosol Research Group Experiment (LARGE).  The "classic" suite of instrumenation measures in-situ aerosol micrphysical and optical properties. The package can be tailored for specific science objectives and to operate on a variety of aircraft. Depending on the aircraft, measurments are made from either a shrouded single-diffuser "Clarke" inlet, from a BMI (Brechtel Manufacturing Inc.) isokinetic inlet, or from a HIML inlet. Primary measurements include:

1.) total and non-volatile particle concentrations (3nm and 10nm nominal size cuts),
2.) dry size distributions from 3nm to 5µm diameter using a combination of mobilty-optical-aerodynamic sizing techniques,
3.) dry and humidified scattering coefficients (at 450, 550, and 700nm wavelength), and
4.) dry absorption coefficients (470, 532, and 670nm wavelength). 

LARGE derived products include particle size statistics (integrated number, surface area, and volume concentrations for ultrafine, accumulation, and coarse modes), dry and ambient aerosol extinction coefficients, single scattering albedo, angstrom exponent coefficients, and scattering hygroscopicity parameter f(RH).

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DC-8 - AFRC, C-130H - WFF, P-3 Orion - WFF, HU-25 Falcon - LaRC, King Air B-200 - LaRC, Twin Otter - CIRPAS - NPS
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Soluble Acidic Gases and Aerosols

As part of the measurement team on the NASA DC-8 we operate two related installations: a mist chamber/ion chromatograph (MC/IC) sampling/analysis system providing near real time results for selected species, and a bulk aerosol system that collects particulates onto filters for subsequent analysis. We use ion chromatography on aqueous extracts of the bulk aerosol samples collected on Teflon filters to quantify soluble ions (Cl-, Br-, NO3-, SO42-, C2O42-, Na+, NH4+, K+, Ca+, and Mg+). Filters are exposed on all level flight legs. Below 3 km exposure times are 5 minutes or less, increasing at higher altitudes to a maximum sample time of 15 minutes. Aerosols participate in heterogeneous chemistry, impact radiative transfer, and can be detected from space. Our measurements help to validate and extend retrievals of aerosol distributions and properties by MODIS, MISR and CALIPSO. In addition, several of the particle-associated ions are tracers of sources of gas and aerosol pollutants (e.g., SO42- from industrial emissions of SO2, enhancements of C2O42-, K+, and NH4+ indicate encounters with biomass burning plumes, Na+, and Cl- are tracers of seasalt, Mg2+ and Ca2+ are tracers of dust). Our system has two inlets, allowing collection of paired samples simultaneously.

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Cryogenic Hygrometer

Water vapor concentrations are measured using the cryogenically-cooled, chilled mirror hygrometer (Buck Research model CR-1). This instrument has a wide dynamic range (-90 to +30 C or approximately 1 to 30,000 ppmv H2O) and reasonably rapid response time (2 to 20 seconds, depending on the temporal and quantitative characteristics of the change in water vapor concentrations). The model CR-1 hygrometer utilizes a cryogenically chilled mirror and electro-optical technique to determine the dew/frost point of a gas. The primary difference between the CR-1 and other chilled mirror hygrometers is the mechanism used to cool the mirror surface. The mirror surface on which the dew/frost layer is preserved is coupled to a rod cooled by LN2 cryogen. The mirror surface is heated to the dew/frost point by means of a heater winding attached to the mirror rod. A control circuit controlled by optics monitors the reflectance from a LED off the mirror surface and maintains the condensate layer at a preset level. A thermistor embedded in the mirror measures the surface temperature and is output as a direct reading of the dew/frost point of the sample gas.

Air samples for the CR-1 hygrometer are provided by a separate window-mounted droplet-excluding inlet probe which has been used aboard the DC-8 platform in previous field missions. The in situ sampling probe consists of a stainless steel tubing inlet probe insert combined with a Rosemount type102 non-deiced temperature sensor housing. This type forward-facing probe provides inboard sampling of ambient air while maintaining efficient inertial separation of droplets and particles from the sampled air stream. The outer structural portion of the probe is manufactured by Rosemount Aerospace, Inc. and is flight-certified for use aboard both research and commercial jet aircraft. In normal subsonic flight, the inlet is self-pumping and develops enough pressure head to provide up to 15 liters/minute airflow through the approximately the 1 meter of ¼ “ stainless steel tubing which connects the inlet to the sensors. The tubing used to supply the sample air to the hygrometer is heated to approximately 50° C to avoid any chance of internal condensation in the sample line and reduce errors associated with wall effects.

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Particle Into Liquid Sampler

The Particle Into Liquid Sampler (PILS) was developed for rapid automated on-line and continuous measurement of ambient aerosol bulk composition. The general approach is based on earlier devices in which ambient particles are mixed with saturated water vapor to produce droplets easily collected by inertial techniques. The resulting liquid stream is analyzed with an ion chromatograph to quantitatively measure the bulk aerosol ionic components. In this instrument, a modified version of a particle size magnifier is employed to activate and grow particles comprising the fine aerosol mass. A single jet inertial impactor is used to collect the droplets onto a vertical glass plate that is continually washed with a constant water diluent flow of nominally 0.10 ml min-1. The flow is divided and then analyzed by a dual channel ion chromatograph. In its current form, 4.3 min integrated samples were measured every 7 min. The instrument provides bulk composition measurements with a detection limit of approximately 0.1 µg m-3 for chloride, nitrate, sulfate, sodium, ammonium, calcium, and potassium.

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Na, NH4, K, Mg, Ca+2, Cl, NO2, NO3, SO4, PO4, Br-, WSOC
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URI Peroxides and Formaldehyde Instrument

POPS measures CH2O, H2O2, and CH3OOH.

CH2O is measured by aqueous collection followed by enzyme fluorescence detection.

H2O2 and CH3OOH is measured by aqueous collection followed by HPLC separation and enzyme fluorescence detection.

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Georgia Tech Laser-Induced Fluorescence

The Georgia Tech Laser-Induced Fluorescence instrument measures nitric oxide (NO), formaldehyde (HCHO), and nitrogen dioxide (NO2). Each species is measured by laser-induced fluorescence at reduced pressure. Ambient air is drawn in through a pinhole orifice into a pair of multipass White cells. The pressure in the White cells is maintained at 5-10 mbar to extend the fluorescence lifetime, and the multiple passes (typically 32-40) effectively extends the probe interaction volume. The ambient air is probed at 90o from the flow and the fluorescence collected at 90o to the flow and probe.

NO is probed at the 226 absorption line and monitored at the 247 nm fluorescence. The laser pulse and scattering will be time-gated out using microchannel plate detectors. The expected 2-sigma limit of detection is 5 pptv/min. Formaldehyde is probed at 353 nm and the fluorescence monitored in a range from 400 to 450 nm. The expected performance is 10 pptv/min. NO2 will be probed near 435 nm and the fluorescence around 780 nm collected. Its expected performance is 15 pptv/min. In each case, the probe wavelength will be alternately switched from the absorption feature to a nearby “off-line” position to determine the background. The actual frequency will be monitored in reference cells. Calbration is done by standard addition to the airflow. The light sources used are custom-built cavities pumped by a diode-pumped Nd:YAG laser operating at ~10 kHz.

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Chemical Ionization Mass Spectrometer

The CIMS instrument consists of a low pressure ion molecule reactor (IMR) coupled to a quadrupole mass filter by an actively pumped collisional dissociation chamber (CDC) and an octopole ion guide. The vacuum system is a 100 mm outer diameter stainless steel chamber evacuated with two small turbo pumps (70 l s-1). The mass filter is a set of 9.5 mm diameter quadrupole rods housed in the main vacuum chamber. The CDC is a short 80 mm diameter chamber that houses an octopole ion guide and is evacuated with a hybrid molecular drag pump. The IMR is evacuated with a scroll pump (300 l min-1) that also serves as the backing pump for the mass spectrometer.

Click here for the Collaborative Ground and Airborne Observations description page.

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DC-8 - AFRC, Gulfstream V - NSF
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Dual Channel Airborne tunable diode Laser Spectrometer

The instrument uses two-tone frequency modulation (TTFM) with signal detection at approximately equals 12 MHz. Multiplexing is achieved using a dichroic optical element and a mechanical chopper which blocks each beam alternately. A control program running on a dedicated digital signal processor (DSP) allows the registration of the full absorption line shape each millisecond and simultaneous zero overhead on-line data reduction using a multiple linear regression algorithm. Gas exchange through the compact multireflection cell (2.71 volume, total path 53 m.) takes place in approximately equals 200 ms and thus determines the instrument response time.

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Alan Fried (Co-I)

Langley In Situ Fast-Response Ozone Measurements

• Technique: Chemluminescent reaction of ozone with nitric oxide
• Dynamic Range: 0.6 - 1600 ppb
• Accuracy: 5% or 2 ppb
• Precision: 2% or 0.6 ppb
• Response: 2-3 Hz; recorded at 6 Hz, reported at 1 Hz, faster data on request
• Spatial Resolution: <10 m vertical (aircraft spiral), 200 m horizontal (at 400 kts)

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Solar Spectral Flux Radiometer

In early 2000, the Ames Atmospheric Radiation Group completed the design and development of an all new Solar Spectral Flux Radiometer (SSFR). The SSFR is used to measure solar spectral irradiance at moderate resolution to determine the radiative effect of clouds, aerosols, and gases on climate, and also to infer the physical properties of aerosols and clouds. Additionally, the SSFR was used to acquire water vapor spectra using the Ames 25-meter base-path multiple-reflection absorption cell in a laboratory experiment. The Solar Spectral Flux Radiometer is a moderate resolution flux (irradiance) spectrometer with 8-12 nm spectral resolution, simultaneous zenith and nadir viewing. It has a radiometric accuracy of 3% and a precision of 0.5%. The instrument is calibrated before and after every experiment, using a NIST-traceable lamp. During field experiments, the stability of the calibration is monitored before and after each flight using portable field calibrators. Each SSFR consists of 2 light collectors, which are either fix-mounted to the aircraft fuselage, or on a stabilizing platform which counteracts the movements of the aircraft. Through fiber optic cables, the light collectors are connected to 2 identical pairs of spectrometers, which cover the wavelength range from (a) 350 nm-1000 nm (Zeiss grating spectrometer with Silicon linear diode array) and (b) 950 nm - 2150 nm (Zeiss grating spectrometer with InGaAs linear diode array). Each spectrometer pair covers about 95% of the incoming solar incident irradiance spectrum.

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