P-3 Orion 03/17/14 - 03/18/14

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Flight Number: 
Sea Ice - North Beaufort Loop - with Barrow
Payload Configuration: 
Operation IceBridge
Nav Data Collected: 
Total Flight Time: 
8.2 hours
Flight Segments: 
Start:03/17/14 17:01 Z Finish:03/18/14 01:14 Z
Flight Time:8.2 hours
Log Number:14P008PI:Michael Studinger
Funding Source:Bruce Tagg - NASA - SMD - ESD Airborne Science Program
Purpose of Flight:Science
Flight Hour Summary: 
Flight Hours Approved in SOFRS369
Total Used354.1
Total Remaining14.9
14P008 Flight Reports
Date Flt # Purpose of Flight Duration Running Total Hours Remaining Miles Flown
03/10/14WFF to Thule TransitTransit8.117.8351.2
03/12/14Sea Ice - Nansen GapScience7.625.4343.6
03/13/14Sea Ice - Zig Zag EastScience7.733.1335.9
03/14/14Thule - Fairbanks Transit: Sea Ice - Laxon LineScience8.841.9327.1
03/15/14 - 03/16/14Sea Ice - SIZRS ZigZagScience8.150319
03/17/14 - 03/18/14Sea Ice - North Beaufort Loop - with BarrowScience8.258.2310.8
03/18/14 - 03/19/14F06 Sea Ice - East Beaufort - with ONR/MIZ/CryoVEx campScience8.266.4302.6
03/19/14 - 03/20/14F07 Sea Ice - Beaufort -Chukchi DiamondScience8.374.7294.3
03/21/14F08: Sea Ice – South Basin TransectScience8.583.2285.8
03/24/14F09: Sea Ice – Giles GatewayScience891.2277.8
03/25/14F10 - Axel Heiberg-EurekaScience394.2274.8
03/26/14F11 - Zigzag WestScience7.9102.1266.9
03/28/14Sea Ice – South Canada BasinScience7109.1259.9
03/31/14F13 Sea Ice – CryoVEx NordScience7.3116.4252.6
04/03/14F15 Sea Ice - North Canada BasinScience8.2124.6244.4
04/04/14Transit from Thule to KangerlussuaqTransit2.8127.4241.6
04/05/14Science Flight #16 - East GlaciersScience7.8135.2233.8
04/07/14Science Flight - Southwest Coastal AScience7.7142.9226.1
04/08/14Science Flight - Southeast Glacier 01Science7.6150.5218.5
04/09/14Science Flight - Jakobshaven Glacier 01Science8158.5210.5
04/10/14Science Flight - K-EGIG Summit MissionScience7.9166.4202.6
04/12/14Science Flight - OSU ClustersScience6.6173196
04/14/14Science Flight - Jakobshavn-Eqip-Store Science7.7180.7188.3
04/15/14Science Flight - Southwest Glacier 01Science7.3188181
04/16/14Science Flight - IceSat 2 CentralScience8.4196.4172.6
04/19/14Science Flight - Jakobshaven 02Science6.4202.8166.2
04/21/14Science Flight - Geikie Glacier 01Science8.6211.4157.6
04/23/14Science Flight - Baffin 02Science6217.4151.6
04/24/14Science Flight - Helheim-KangerdScience8.2225.6143.4
04/25/14Transit Flight - Kangerlussuaq to ThuleTransit2.6228.2140.8
04/26/14Science Flight - NW Glacier 02 Mop-UpScience5.6233.8135.2
04/28/14Science Flight - North Pole TransectScience7.3241.1127.9
04/29/14Science Flight - Northeast Glaciers 01Science7.8248.9120.1
04/30/14Science Flight - Northeast Grid 01Science2.6251.5117.5
05/01/14Science Flight - Humboldt 01Science5.5257112
05/02/14Science Flight - Cryosat LandScience7264105
05/05/14Science Flight - IceSat 2 - NorthScience827297
05/07/14Science Flight - NW Glaciers 01Science828089
05/08/14Science Flight - North Central Gap 01Science828881
05/09/14Science Flight - NW Coastal BScience6.9294.974.1
05/12/14Science Flight - Alexander-Petermann 01Science7301.967.1
05/14/14Science Flight - Northeast Grid 01Science7.7309.659.4
05/15/14Science Flight - Northeast Grid 06Science8317.651.4
05/16/14Science Flight - NW Coastal CScience6.1323.745.3
05/19/14Science Flight - North Glaciers 02 PrimeScience8331.737.3
05/20/14Science Flight - Northwest MopupScience6.5338.230.8
05/21/14Science Flight - Northeast Grid 04Science7.9346.122.9
05/23/14Transit Flight - Thule to WallopsTransit7.5353.615.4
05/23/14Transit Flight - Thule to WallopsTransit0.5354.114.9

Flight Reports began being entered into this system as of 2012 flights. If there were flights flown under an earlier log number the flight reports are not available online.

Related Science Report: 

OIB - P-3 Orion 03/17/14 Science Report

Mission Summary: 

F05 SI North Beaufort Loop with Barrow




  • Low-altitude survey (1,500 ft AGL) over sea ice in the Beaufort Sea.
  • Collected data on 7 passes over NRL ground site near Barrow.
  • ATM, Albedo, KT-19, snow, Ku-band, accumulation radars,and DMS were operated on the survey lines.
  • Satellite Tracks: none
  • Repeat Mission: none


Instrument Operated Data Volume Instrument Issues/Comments
ATM yes 48 GB None.
DMS yes 94 GB None.
Snow Radar yes 110 GB None. Lost GPS feed from accumulation radar.
Ku-band Radar yes 110 GB None. Lost GPS feed from accumulation radar.
Accumulation Radar yes 0 GB Hardware failure. Did not record data on today's flight.
MCoRDS no N/A Not operated due to sea ice mission.
KT-19 yes 7.5 MB None.
Albedo yes 3.8 GB None.


Mission Report (Michael Studinger, Mission Scientist)

Today's flight is a new mission plan. It is intended to sample sea ice in the western Arctic Basin along north-south gradients in the Beaufort Sea, and to fill gaps in previous coverage primarily in the northeastern Beaufort Sea. It is also the backup option to incorporate overflights of the NRL field sites near Barrow, with “SIZRS Zigzag” as the primary and since the weather during the “SIZRS Zigzag” mission prevented us from collecting data over the NRL site we included 7 passes over the site on today's mission. It addresses Level-1 Requirements SI1 and SI2.

The satellite image showed a dense low cloud cover over the coastal portions over the Beaufort sea (Fig. 4). The METARs from Barrow indicated that we can underlfly the clouds. The METAR reports started our with an 8000 ft ceiling at 4:00 am local time and dropped down to 2,200 foot shortly before takeoff. We encountered an dense fog layer right over the main survey area that is 400 m long and 60 m wide and did not get any laser or DMS data during the first 4 passes. The 5th pass was clear and after the 6th pass was clear as well we decided to do a 7th pass to get more data. The areas north and south of the line had better weather and we even flew over several leads on the northern side in the Chukchi Sea. All in all we got the data we wanted. DMS captured some of the garbage bag markers and corner reflectors (Fig. 3). The 7 passes were all spot on (see Fig. 2).

UTC time
no LiDAR or DMS data due to clouds over main survey area
no LiDAR or DMS data due to clouds over main survey area
no LiDAR or DMS data due to clouds over main survey area
no LiDAR or DMS data due to clouds over main survey area
data on all instruments
data on all instruments
data on all instruments

LiDAR data collection started 03/17/2014 18:44 UTC and ended at 03/17/2014 23:54 UTC. In total we collected 5.2 hours of science data. The lasers recorded 100% of the surface returns during that time after the first 4 passes over the NRL ground site near Barrow. We had to turn early before waypoint NBLC in order to make up for time lost during the passes over the ground site. We climbed 10 minutes early before we reached the coast near NBLE because of dense fog.


Today's mission plan and P-3 trajectory.

Trajectory map of the 7 passes over the NRL ground site near Barrow.

DMS image of one of the start/end of the main survey grid.

Infrared satellite image available before takeoff