Velocity

2014

NovAtel's Annual Journal of GNSS Technology Solutions and Innovation

Issue link: http://velocitymagazine.epubxp.com/i/380251

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global hawk velocity 2014 For more Solutions visit http://www.novatel.com 8 storm—even if that means evacuating to get out of its path. "We basically want to know what makes hurricanes intensify rapidly," Heymsfield says of the HS3 mission. "We don't always know why they intensify rapidly in 6 to 12 hours. The mission will help better predict the processes that cause rapid intensification of storms. Say a storm gets near the coast. Then we're worried about if it will intensify or not. This informa- tion will help better predict that." The five-year mission began with the plan- ning stages in 2010, and continued with f lights from August to September in both 2012 and 2013. The mission wraps up after this year's hurricane season, and will give scientists the information they need to better determine the processes that lead to those intense, devas- tating hurricanes that cost an average of $10 billion in damage every year—and to better forecast them. Why Global Hawk The Global Hawk Unmanned Aircraft Systems overcome several limitations that once kept re- searchers from studying how hurricanes evolve and why. Not only can they fly to an altitude of about 60,000 feet—about twice as high as a commercial airliner—and as far as 12,600 miles, they also can fly for about 26 hours, according to NASA. This gives researchers the time, distance and altitude they need to collect continuous, high-resolution measurements that will help better predict storm intensity. "They have very long endurance," Heymsfield says. "They can fly for about 26 hours or so, and for studying a hurricane far out in the Atlantic Ocean, we need at least this much endurance for the plane to fly over the storm far from the coast. Any plane with a pilot is limited to 8 hours or so of flight time. This allows us to study storms way out over the ocean." Altitude is important too, Heymsfield says, because it enables researchers to get a better look inside the storms with the state-of-the art science instruments the Global Hawks use to study tropical storms and hurricanes. "We measure the structure of storms any where there is precipitation and clouds that the radar can detect," Heymsfield says. "We mea- Also in 2014, NASA used NovAtel technology in an experiment that isn't related to hurricanes. IPHEx, or the Integrated Precipitation and Hydrology Experiment," seeks to characterize warm season orographic precipitation regimes, and the relationship between precipitation regimes and hydrologic processes in regions of complex terrain," according to data provided by the IPHEx experiment, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Duke University, North Carolina. The experiment included an Intense Observing Period (IOP) from May– July of 2014 post GPM launch, which is the Global Precipitation Mission, according to the website. GPM is an international satellite mission to "provide next-generation observations of rain and snow worldwide every three hours." The observing period focused on 4D mapping of the precipitation structure. The NASA ER-2 and the UND Citation aircraft conducted high altitude and "in the column" measurements. The ER-2 plane is equipped with multi- frequency-radiometers (AMPR and CoSMIR), the dual-frequency Ka-Ku band, HIWRAP Ka-Ku band, CRS W-band, and EXRAD X-band radars. A NovAtel SPAN-SE and a ProPak-V3, both, triple-frequency GNSS receivers that track GPS+GLONASS were used. Another way NASA uses NovAtel technology to study weather Acknowledgements NovAtel would like to thank Michael Brown, president and owner of Steve Lieber & Associates Inc., for his aid in proposing and acquiring this article.

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