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Proceedings Paper • Open Access

IceCube: spaceflight demonstration of 883-GHz cloud radiometer for future science
Author(s): Dong L. Wu; Jeffrey R. Piepmeier; Jaime Esper; Negar Ehsan; Paul E. Racette; Thomas E. Johnson; Brian S. Abresch; Eric Bryerton

Paper Abstract

Cloud ice play important roles in Earth’s climate and weather systems through their interactions with atmospheric radiation, dynamics, energy and precipitation processes. Submillimeter (submm) wave remote sensing at 200-1000 GHz is able to provide the sensitivity not covered by visible (VIS)/infrared (IR) and low-frequency microwave (MW) sensors (10-183 GHz), and measure cloud ice in the middle-to-upper troposphere. The IceCube 883-GHz cloud radiometer is the latest of NASA’s efforts to advance the technology readiness level (TRL) of submm-wave receiver technology for future compact, low-cost implementation of Earth observing systems. Emerging CubeSat opportunities allow a fast-track development and spaceflight demonstration of IceCube on a 3-U CubeSat. Funded by NASA’s In-Space Validation of Earth Science Technologies (InVEST) program and Science Mission Directorate (SMD), IceCube is the first CubeSat developed and flown by Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) in 2.5 years, using commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) components and subsystems. It was successfully released from International Space Station (ISS) in May 2017, acquired 15-month science data and produced the first global map of the 883-GHz cloud ice. It achieved all mission objectives and provided a pathway for future cost-effective cloud observations from CubeSat constellation.

Paper Details

Date Published: 30 August 2019
PDF: 14 pages
Proc. SPIE 11131, CubeSats and SmallSats for Remote Sensing III, 1113103 (30 August 2019); doi: 10.1117/12.2530589
Show Author Affiliations
Dong L. Wu, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Jeffrey R. Piepmeier, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Jaime Esper, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Negar Ehsan, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Paul E. Racette, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Thomas E. Johnson, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Brian S. Abresch, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Eric Bryerton, Virginia Diodes, Inc. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 11131:
CubeSats and SmallSats for Remote Sensing III
Thomas S. Pagano; Charles D. Norton; Sachidananda R. Babu, Editor(s)

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