Balloon-borne disposable radiometer for cloud detection

K. A. Nicoll, R. G. Harrison

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A low cost, disposable instrument for measuring solar radiation during meteorological balloon flights through cloud layers is described. Using a photodiode detector and low thermal drift signal conditioning circuitry, the device showed less than 1% drift for temperatures varied from +20 textdegreeC to ?35 textdegreeC. The angular response to radiation, which declined less rapidly than the cosine of the angle between the incident radiation and normal incidence, is used for cloud detection exploiting the motion of the platform. Oriented upwards, the natural motion imposed by the balloon allows cloud and clear air to be distinguished by the absence of radiation variability within cloud, where the diffuse radiation present is isotropic. The optical method employed by the solar radiation instrument has also been demonstrated to provide higher resolution measurements of cloud boundaries than relative humidity measurements alone.
Original languageEnglish
Article number025111
JournalReview of Scientific Instruments
Volume83
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2012

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Balloons
Radiometers
balloons
radiometers
Radiation
solar radiation
Solar radiation
meteorological balloons
Meteorological balloons
humidity measurement
diffuse radiation
balloon flight
incident radiation
radiation
conditioning
Photodiodes
photodiodes
Atmospheric humidity
Signal processing
platforms

Cite this

Balloon-borne disposable radiometer for cloud detection. / Nicoll, K. A.; Harrison, R. G.

In: Review of Scientific Instruments, Vol. 83, No. 2, 025111, 01.02.2012.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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