Note: A miniature oscillating microbalance for sampling ice and volcanic ash from a small airborne platform

Martin Airey, R. Giles Harrison, Kerianne Nicoll, Paul Williams, Graeme Marlton

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Abstract

A lightweight and low power oscillating microbalance for in situ sampling of atmospheric ice and volcanic ash is described for airborne platforms. Using a freely exposed collecting wire fixed at only one end to a piezo transducer, the instrument collects airborne materials. Accumulated mass is determined from the change in natural frequency of the wire. The piezo transducer is used in a dual mode to both drive and detect the oscillation. Three independent frequency measurement techniques are implemented with an on-board microcontroller: a frequency sweep, a Fourier spectral method, and a phase-locked loop. These showed agreement to ±0.3 Hz for a 0.5 mm diameter collecting wire of 120 mm long, flown to 19 km altitude on a weather balloon. The instrument is well suited to disposable use with meteorological radiosondes, to provide high resolution vertical profiles of mass concentration.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)086108-086112
Number of pages4
JournalReview of Scientific Instruments
Volume88
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2017

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Ashes
ashes
microbalances
Ice
volcanology
ice
platforms
sampling
wire
Wire
Sampling
Meteorological balloons
Transducers
transducers
Radiosondes
radiosondes
sweep frequency
spectral methods
frequency measurement
balloons

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Note: A miniature oscillating microbalance for sampling ice and volcanic ash from a small airborne platform. / Airey, Martin; Harrison, R. Giles; Nicoll, Kerianne; Williams, Paul; Marlton, Graeme.

In: Review of Scientific Instruments, Vol. 88, No. 8, 01.08.2017, p. 086108-086112.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Airey, Martin ; Harrison, R. Giles ; Nicoll, Kerianne ; Williams, Paul ; Marlton, Graeme. / Note: A miniature oscillating microbalance for sampling ice and volcanic ash from a small airborne platform. In: Review of Scientific Instruments. 2017 ; Vol. 88, No. 8. pp. 086108-086112.
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