Regional Atmospheric Measurement Modeling and Prediction Program (RAMMPP)

Summer 2001 Aircraft Research Update for: June 6

There seems no immediate end in sight to the progression of troughs impacting weather in the Northeast. There is little chance of further research flights this week unless this current pattern breaks.

During a brief break in the dreary weather, however, we did manage a research flight (RF-10) on Monday June 2, the objectives of which were to:
1. Evaluate MM5 forecasts produced here at METO/UMCP
2. Evaluate upper-air wind data from the MDE profiler/RASS at Fort Meade, MD
3. Evaluate upper-air profile data from (i) a NASA micropulse lidar and CIMEL sun photometer both deployed at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center (SERC) at Edgewater, MD, and (ii) sun photometer measurements from a SERC research vessel conducting transects over the Chesapeake Bay southeast of Annapolis, MD
with RF-10 spiral locations detailed in the research flight summary for 2001.

Flight data were typical of springtime atmospheric conditions, with relative humidity 50-80% and ozone 50-60 ppbv within the planetary boundary layer (PBL) over the region covered by the flight. Weather conditions were characterized by moderate zonal westely winds aloft and very light haze in the PBL capped by a strong inversion around 1800 m MSL and scattered cumulous clouds.

Flight data near the Chesapeake Bay (ANP and Jet profiles) will be compared with remotely-sensed atmospheric column data collected concurrently by colleagues at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center and SERC. The profile data from Fort Meade, Md (FME profile) supports our ongoing local measurement, modeling and forecasting activities under RAMMPP. Some problems with PSAP instrument data acquisition software precluded aerosol absorption (Bap) data for the FME profile, but otherwise instrument performance was nominal.

Check back for upcoming flights (when we eventually see some summertime weather!)