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Radio occultation from recoverable air balloons for weather applications


Radio occultation from satellites have been proven very useful for numerical weather prediction, which in turn led to the commercial weather data pilot (CWDP) projects. However,
radio occultation from air balloons have not been explored previously. With the availability of low cost Global Positioning System (GPS) receivers and maturing technology, there appears
to be opportunities for measuring atmospheric profiles from recoverable air balloons, or even in conjunction with the radiosondes currently being launched. Therefore, this project provides an
opportunity to study the feasibility of radio occultation from air balloons which may have great commercialization potentials.

Project Goals:
The goal is to demonstrate the feasibility by designing and developing a hardware/software system for balloon platform with sufficient quality for measuring global navigation satellite
system (GNSS) signals in retrieving atmospheric profiles such as temperature, moisture, and pressure through radio occultation. The balloon platform should reach heights of several
kilometers. The commercialization of this project highly depends on the success of the feasibility and data quality demonstrated.

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