Networkable Automated Water Vapor Lidar for Tropospheric Profiling

Award Information
Agency:
Department of Energy
Branch:
N/A
Amount:
$999,997.00
Award Year:
2013
Program:
STTR
Phase:
Phase II
Contract:
DE-FG02-12ER86514
Agency Tracking Number:
98690
Solicitation Year:
2013
Solicitation Topic Code:
03g
Solicitation Number:
DE-FOA-0000782
Small Business Information
Physical Sciences Inc.
MA, Andover, MA, 01810-1077
Hubzone Owned:
N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
073800062
Principal Investigator
 David Sonnenfroh
 Dr.
 (978) 738-8235
 sonnengroh@psicorp.com
Business Contact
 B. Green
Title: Dr.
Phone: (978) 689-0003
Email: green@psicorp.com
Research Institution
 Montana State University
 309 Montana Hall
BOZEMAN, MT, 59717-
 () -
 Nonprofit college or university
Abstract
Measurement of the vertical profile of H2O vapor in the lower atmosphere can provide new understanding of the dynamics of H2O vapor mass transport. Such measurements can improve predictive capability for precipitation forecasts as well as lead to increased understanding of complex feedback mechanisms involving H2O vapor, temperature, radiative balance, and precipitation and therefore are important to global climate change modeling. While techniques exist to measure vertical profiles of H2O vapor in the atmosphere, there is a need for a compact and economical sensor that can make these measurements in an automated manner as part of a network. A compact Differential Absorption Lidar can measure vertical profiles of H2O vapor in the lower atmosphere. Based on mature telecom components, the proposed system will have the capability to make round-the-clock measurements in a network environment. The Phase I program enhanced the measurement performance of the system by increasing the transmit power and by decreasing the range of the first measurement. The Phase I program enhanced the long term stability of the system by creating a rugged mechanical design and subjecting it to thermoelastic analysis. The Phase II program will fabricate an engineering prototype and demonstrate it at the DoE Southern Great Plains site for several months. It will be intercompared with balloon-borne radiosondes and with the sites Raman Lidar facility. Measurements of water vapor flux will be demonstrated by operating in collaboration with the sites Doppler lidar. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits: The primary market for the compact water vapor differential absorption lidar system is for routine water vapor measurements for meteorology. The increased data volume is expected to lead to improved general weather forecasts, as well as those for extreme events.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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