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Remote Sens. 2013, 5(12), 6241-6259; doi:10.3390/rs5126241

Progress towards an Autonomous Field Deployable Diode-Laser-Based Differential Absorption Lidar (DIAL) for Profiling Water Vapor in the Lower Troposphere

Electrical and Computer Engineering, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT 59717, USA
National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, CO 80307, USA
NASA Langley Research Center, Hampton, VA 23681, USA
Physics Department, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT 59717, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 31 August 2013 / Revised: 2 November 2013 / Accepted: 13 November 2013 / Published: 25 November 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optical Remote Sensing of the Atmosphere)
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A laser transmitter has been developed and incorporated into a micro-pulse differential absorption lidar (DIAL) for water vapor profiling in the lower troposphere as an important step towards long-term autonomous field operation. The laser transmitter utilizes two distributed Bragg reflector (DBR) diode lasers to injection seed a pulsed tapered semiconductor optical amplifier (TSOA), and is capable of producing up to 10 mJ of pulse energy with a 1 ms pulse duration and a 10 kHz pulse repetition frequency. The on-line wavelength of the laser transmitter can operate anywhere along the water vapor absorption feature centered at 828.187 nm (in vacuum) depending on the prevailing atmospheric conditions, while the off-line wavelength operates at 828.287 nm. This laser transmitter has been incorporated into a DIAL instrument utilizing a 35.6 cm Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope and fiber coupled avalanche photodiode (APD) operating in the photon counting mode. The performance of the DIAL instrument was demonstrated over a ten-day observation period. During this observation period, data from radiosondes were used to retrieve water vapor number density profiles for comparisons with the number density profiles retrieved from the DIAL data. View Full-Text
Keywords: DIAL; trace gas sensing; ground-based lidar DIAL; trace gas sensing; ground-based lidar

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Repasky, K.S.; Moen, D.; Spuler, S.; Nehrir, A.R.; Carlsten, J.L. Progress towards an Autonomous Field Deployable Diode-Laser-Based Differential Absorption Lidar (DIAL) for Profiling Water Vapor in the Lower Troposphere. Remote Sens. 2013, 5, 6241-6259.

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