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Proceedings Paper

Measuring the water vapor above the SOFIA Observatory
Author(s): Thomas L. Roellig; Lunming Yuen; David Sisson; Allan Meyer
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Paper Abstract

The SOFIA airborne observatory flies in the lower stratosphere above more than 99.9% of the Earth's water vapor. As low as this residual water vapor is, it will still affect SOFIA's infrared and sub-millimeter astronomical observations. As a result, a heterodyne instrument operating at 183 GHz will be used to measure the integrated water vapor overburden in flight. The accuracy of the measured precipitable water vapor must be 2 microns or better, 3 sigma, and measured at least once a minute. This presentation will cover the design and the measured laboratory performance of this instrument, and will discuss other options for determining the water vapor overburden during the SOFIA Early Science shared-risk period.

Paper Details

Date Published: 5 August 2010
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 7733, Ground-based and Airborne Telescopes III, 773339 (5 August 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.856506
Show Author Affiliations
Thomas L. Roellig, NASA Ames Research Ctr. (United States)
Lunming Yuen, TechnoScience Corp. (United States)
David Sisson, TechnoScience Corp. (United States)
Allan Meyer, Univ. Space Research Association, NASA Ames Research Ctr. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7733:
Ground-based and Airborne Telescopes III
Larry M. Stepp; Roberto Gilmozzi; Helen J. Hall, Editor(s)

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