They will come by land, sea, and air to probe the skies and take measure of the air we breathe. And the University of New Hampshire will be at the center of it all – the largest and most complex air quality-climate study ever attempted.
Satellites will fly overhead scanning the Earth’s atmosphere, research aircraft will make tight spirals down a 40,000-foot column of air and “sniff” for hundreds of chemical species. Planes will fly wingtip-to-wingtip gathering air samples and comparing measurements to gauge instrument accuracy. Small, high-tech balloons that adjust their height to stay inside a polluted air mass will be launched in hopes of crossing the Atlantic Ocean to see what the United States exports to Europe.
The initiative kicks off when the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) 274-foot Research Vessel Ronald H. Brown steams into Portsmouth Harbor at the end of June to load the scientific instruments designed for the six-week field experiment. Known as the International Consortium for Atmospheric Research on Transport and Transformation or ICARTT, the study will involve five countries, universities and government agencies, and hundreds of scientists, including researchers, technicians, and students from UNH, which will be the host institution.
Denise Hart | newswise
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