P-3 Orion 03/21/14

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Flight Number: 
F08: Sea Ice – South Basin Transect
Payload Configuration: 
Operation IceBridge
Nav Data Collected: 
Total Flight Time: 
8.5 hours
Flight Segments: 
Start:03/21/14 08:37 Z Finish:03/21/14 17:07 Z
Flight Time:8.5 hours
Log Number:14P008PI:Michael Studinger
Funding Source:Bruce Tagg - NASA - SMD - ESD Airborne Science Program
Purpose of Flight:Science
Comments:Successful data collection along the survey line over the Arctic Basin. The weather was better than expected and the ATM wideswath scanner reocorded 100% surface returns. The T-3 narrow scanner control computer failed before takeoff and could not be revived. Next science flight opportunity will be Monday, March 24, 2014.
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 03/21/14 Science Report

Mission Summary: 

F08 Sea Ice – South Basin Transect


  • Low-altitude survey (1,500 ft AGL) over sea ice in the Arctic Basin.
  • ATM, Albedo, KT-19, snow, Ku-band, accumulation radars, and DMS were operated on the survey lines.
  • Satellite Tracks: ICESat 0282, 0284.
  • Repeat Mission: last flown in 2013.


Instrument Operated Data Volume Instrument Issues/Comments
ATM yes 23 GB T3 data logging and control computer failed before takeoff. No T3 data.
DMS yes 46 GB None. Recorded 8,090 images. Darkness and low sun angles at beginning.
Snow Radar yes 72 GB None.
Ku-band Radar yes 72 GB None.
Accumulation Radar yes 112 GB None.
MCoRDS no N/A Not operated due to sea ice mission.
KT-19 yes 7 MB None.
Albedo yes 1 GB None. Darkness and very low sun angles impacted data quality.


Mission Report (Michael Studinger, Mission Scientist)

Today's mission is a repeat of missions flown each year of IceBridge beginning in 2009. Timing on this flight is always challenging because we must land at Thule before the airfield closes at 15:00 local time on Fridays, which is five hours ahead of Fairbanks local time. This means that we must depart Fairbanks at approximately 01:00 local time, and this in turn means that we must fly the first few hours of this flight in darkness. In addition to Level-1 Requirements SI1 and SI2, it addresses sea ice level 1 baseline requirement SI3a by providing data on the thickness gradient and distribution of perennial and seasonal ice across the Arctic Basin.

The weather along the survey line was surprisingly good and we were able to collect good ATM T4 data with 100% surface returns over the entire line. The data logging and control computer for the ATM T4 narrow scanner failed before takeoff and could not be recovered. No T4 data was collected.

LiDAR data collection started 03/21/2014 10:24 UTC and ended at 03/21/2014 15:20 UTC. In total we collected 5.0 hours of science data. The ATM T4 laser recorded 100% of the surface returns during that time.


Figure 1: Mission plan of today's flight in yellow

Figure 2: Infrared satellite image available before takeoff