Confronting the boundary layer data gap: evaluating new and existing methodologies of probing the lower atmosphere
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Confronting the boundary layer data gap: evaluating new and existing methodologies of probing the lower atmosphere

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  • Description:
    It is widely accepted that the atmospheric boundary layer is drastically under-sampled in the vertical dimension. In recent years, the commercial availability of ground-based remote sensors combined with the widespread use of small, weather-sensing uncrewed aerial systems (WxUAS) has opened up many opportunities to fill this measurement gap. In July 2018, the University of Oklahoma (OU) deployed a state-of-the-art WxUAS, dubbed the CopterSonde, and the Collaborative Lower Atmospheric Mobile Profiling System (CLAMPS) in the San Luis Valley in south-central Colorado. Additionally, these systems were deployed to the Kessler Atmospheric and Ecological Field Station (KAEFS) in October 2018. The colocation of these various systems provided ample opportunity to compare and contrast kinematic and thermodynamic observations from different methodologies of boundary layer profiling, namely WxUAS, remote sensing, and the traditional in situ radiosonde. In this study, temperature, dew point temperature, wind speed, and wind direction from these platforms are compared statistically with data from the two campaigns. Moreover, we present select instances from the dataset to highlight differences between the measurement techniques. This analysis highlights strengths and weaknesses of planetary boundary layer profiling and helps lay the groundwork for developing highly adaptable systems that integrate remote and in situ profiling techniques.
  • Source:
    Atmos. Meas. Tech., 13, 3855–3872, 2020
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    CC BY
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