O3 Photometer - UAS (NOAA) (UAS-O3)


Operated By: 

A photo of the NOAA-2 O3 instrument (without its enclosure) showing a: fans; b: heaters; c: catalytic scrubber; d: flow control valve (V3); e: sample flow sensor; f: sample line; g: exhaust line.

Ozone (O3) in the lower stratosphere (LS) is responsible for absorbing much of the biologically damaging ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sunlight, and thus plays a critical role in protecting Earth's environment. By absorbing UV light, O3 heats the surrounding air, leading to the vertical stratification and dynamic stability that define the stratosphere. Manmade halogen compounds, such as CFCs, cause significant damage to the O3 layer in the LS and lead to the formation of the Antarctic ozone hole. Accurate measurement of O3 in the LS is the first step toward understanding and protecting stratospheric O3. The UAS Ozone Photometer was designed specifically for autonomous, precise, and accurate O3 measurements in the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere (UT/LS) onboard the NASA Global Hawk Unmanned Aircraft System (GH UAS). With a data rate of 2 Hz, the instrument can provide high-time-resolution, detailed information for studies of O3 photochemistry, radiation balance, stratosphere-troposphere exchange, and air parcel mixing in the UT/LS. Furthermore, its accurate data are used for satellite validations. The quality of the data produced by the UAS Ozone Photometer, combined with the long range and endurance of the GH UAS, make it particularly valuable for satellite measurement validation. Contacts: Ru-Shan Gao, David Fahey, Troy Thornberry, Laurel Watts, Steve Ciciora

Instrument Type: 
Instrument Team: