Subscribe to our free daily newsletters
. 24/7 Space News .




Subscribe to our free daily newsletters



TECH SPACE
Aladin wind probe ready for Aeolus
by Staff Writers
Paris (ESA) Aug 04, 2016


The ADM-Aeolus mission will not only advance our understanding of atmospheric dynamics, but will also provide much-needed information to improve weather forecasts. The satellite carries the first wind lidar in space, which can probe the lowermost 30 km of the atmosphere to provide profiles of wind, aerosols and clouds along the satellite's orbital path. The laser system emits short powerful pulses of ultraviolet light down into the atmosphere. The telescope collects the light that is backscattered from air molecules, particles of dust and droplets of water. The receiver analyses the Doppler shift of the backscattered signal to determine the speed and direction of the wind at various altitudes below the satellite. These near-realtime observations will improve the accuracy of numerical weather and climate prediction and advance our understanding of atmospheric dynamics and processes relevant to climate variability. Image courtesy ESA/ATG medialab. For a larger version of this image please go here.

It has been years in the making, but one of the trickiest pieces of space technology ever developed is finally ready to join its satellite for launch by the end of next year. With this milestone, we are another step closer to a better understanding of Earth's winds. Carrying pioneering lasers, Aeolus will be the first satellite to probe the wind globally.

These vertical slices through the atmosphere, along with information on aerosols and clouds, will advance our knowledge of atmospheric dynamics and contribute to climate research. Since Aeolus will deliver measurements almost in real time, it is also set to provide much-needed information to improve weather forecasts.

Its state-of-the-art Aladin instrument, which was designed by Airbus Defence and Space in France, incorporates two powerful lasers, a large telescope and very sensitive receivers.

The laser generates ultraviolet light that is beamed towards Earth. This light bounces off air molecules and small particles such as dust, ice and droplets of water in the atmosphere. The fraction of light that is scattered back towards the satellite is collected by Aladin's telescope and measured.

Prof. Erland Kallen, Director of Research at the European Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasts, said, "The Aeolus mission will provide wind observations that are unique with respect to the current global observing system capabilities.

"The observations fill a gap in the global observing system and despite the many years of delay there is still a need for the mission and we expect it to have a big impact on weather forecasting.

"In the Tropics, wind information dominates atmospheric analyses and this influences the quality of weather forecasts for Europe for the week ahead.

"Wind information from Aeolus is also expected to be important over oceans in both hemispheres for determining the position and evolution of jet streams and atmospheric fronts."

Developing advanced new space technologies is never easy and the Aeolus mission has certainly faced its share of challenges.

For instance, the optics have to survive exposure to high-intensity laser pulses for at least three years in the unforgiving environment of space. Developing optics that could withstand these extremes took much longer than anticipated.

Nevertheless, recent tests have shown that such technical problems have been resolved.

Frederic Fabre, Project Manager for Aladin at Airbus Defence and Space, said, "This is very good news for the meteorologists and scientists who have been waiting some time for Aladin data to improve weather forecasting.

"The completion of the instrument is a result of the day-to day-involvement of the whole Aladin team including ESA, Airbus Defence and Space and several subcontractors throughout Europe."

Denny Wernham, ESA's Aladin Instrument Manager, remarked, "The very successful results on Aladin are testimony to the dedication, determination and expertise of the team in Toulouse, who have overcome many technical hurdles to deliver the instrument to their UK colleagues.

"It is a really tremendous achievement and we would like to congratulate them for all their efforts."

Thanks for being here;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue sources via quality network advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames and passwords.

Our news coverage takes time and effort to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites informative and useful then please consider becoming a regular supporter or for now make a one off contribution.

SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once


credit card or paypal
SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5 Billed Monthly


paypal only

.


Related Links
Selex-ES
Space Technology News - Applications and Research






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Previous Report
TECH SPACE
HawkEye 360 brings space-based radio frequency mapping and analytics to new applications
Denver CO (SPX) Jul 28, 2016
HawkEye 360 and Lockheed Martin are collaborating to apply HawkEye 360's radio frequency (RF) detection and mapping technology in new markets. HawkEye 360 plans to deploy a constellation of small satellites in low-Earth orbit at less than 600 km (383 miles) from the Earth's surface, to identify, locate and analyze RF signals globally. Pending various regulatory approvals of this system and ... read more


TECH SPACE
As dry as the moon

China's Jade Rabbit lunar rover dies in blaze of online glory

US company gets historic nod to send lander to moon

Heart hazard for Apollo astronauts: study

TECH SPACE
Astrobiologists study Mars on Earth

Mars Gullies Likely Not Formed by Liquid Water

Opportunity Surpasses 43 Kilometers on the Odometer

Digging deeper into Mars

TECH SPACE
After Deadly Crash, Virgin Galactic to Fly Its Spaceplane Once More

Tile Bonding Begins for Orion's First Mission Atop Space Launch System Rocket

Russia, US Discuss Lunar Station for Mars Mission

Disney theme park in Shanghai nears a million visitors

TECH SPACE
China begins developing hybrid spacecraft

China to expand int'l astronauts exchange

China's Agreement with United Nations to Help Developing Countries Get Access to Space

Chinese tracking ship Yuanwang-7 starts maiden voyage

TECH SPACE
JSC pursues collection of new technologies for ISS

Dream Chaser Spacecraft on Track to Supply Cargo to ISS

Russia launches ISS-bound cargo ship

New Crew Members, Including NASA Biologist, Launch to Space Station

TECH SPACE
Russia to Launch Angara-1.2 Rocket With Korean Satellite KOMPSAT-6 in 2020

NASA Orders Second SpaceX Crew Mission to International Space Station

Russia Postpones Launch of Proton Rocket With US Satellite Until October 10

The rise of commercial spaceports

TECH SPACE
Alien Solar System Boasts Tightly Spaced Planets, Unusual Orbits

NASA's Next Planet Hunter Will Look Closer to Home

First atmospheric study of Earth-sized exoplanets reveals rocky worlds

Atmospheric chemistry on paper

TECH SPACE
Aladin wind probe ready for Aeolus

Humanity in Dire Need of Global System to Prevent In-Space Collisions

Lattice structure absorbs vibrations

Study looks at future of 2D materials




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News






The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement