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Moran K. P., S. Pezoa, C. W. Fairall, C. R. Williams, T. E. Ayers, A. Brewer, S. P. de Szoeke and V. Ghate (April 2012): A motion-stabilized W-band radar for shipboard observations of marine boundary-layer clouds. Bound.-Lay. Meteorol., 143 (1), 3-24. doi:10.1007/s10546-011-9674-5

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Cloud radars at X, Ka and W-bands have been used in the past for ocean studies of clouds, but the lack of suitable stabilization has limited their usefulness in obtaining accurate measurements of the velocity structure of cloud particles and the heights of cloud features. A 94 GHz (W-band) radar suitable for use on shipboard studies of clouds has been developed that is small and lightweight and can maintain the radar’s beam pointing in the vertical to reduce the affects of the pitch and roll of the ship. A vertical velocity sensor on the platform allows the effects of the ship’s heave to be removed from the measured cloud particle motions. Results from the VAMOS Ocean-Cloud-Atmosphere-Land Study Regional Experiment (VOCALS-Rex) field program on the NOAA vessel Ronald H. Brown demonstrate the improvements to the cloud measurements after the ship’s motion effects are removed. The compact design of the radar also makes it suitable for use in aircraft studies. The radar is being repackaged to fit in an aft bay of a NOAA P3 aircraft to observe sea-spray profiles during ocean storms.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: PSD Publications
Divisions: Physical Sciences Division
DOI: 10.1007/s10546-011-9674-5