In the clouds above Darwin, Australia, pilots guided by a team of international climate scientists are now one week into a series of carefully orchestrated flights to obtain key in situ data about tropical clouds. Preliminary results obtained from instrumentation on the Proteus --a space-age aircraft equipped with a suite of highly sophisticated sensors -- reveal superior images of ice crystals in high-altitude tropical cirrus clouds.
"These images, combined with data from other aircraft probes, will provide us with a complete data set of detailed information about ice clouds, particularly the numbers of small ice crystals--a parameter that is poorly known and of considerable importance for understanding how clouds affect radiation and climate," said Dr. Greg McFarquhar, one of many U.S. scientists involved in the effort and funded by the Department of Energys Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Program.
The images were taken by the Cloud Particle Imager, an instrument developed by SPEC Inc. that provides very high resolution images of ice crystals. They were obtained as the Proteus aircraft was climbing through a thin layer of aged cirrus clouds, collecting data to help scientists determine how the properties of ice clouds, including particle size and shape, vary with temperature and altitude. These factors influence the longevity of the cloud, and therefore the amount of radiative energy both reaching and escaping the earth.
Predicting unpredictability: Information theory offers new way to read ice cores
07.12.2016 | Santa Fe Institute
Sea ice hit record lows in November
07.12.2016 | University of Colorado at Boulder
In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.
Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...
Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...
A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...
In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...
The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.
The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...
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