Free Newsletters - Space News - Defense Alert - Environment Report - Energy Monitor
. Earth Science News .




ICE WORLD
NASA Langley Aircraft Joins Operation IceBridge
by Michael Finneran for NASA Langley Research Center
Hampton, VA (SPX) May 08, 2012


NASA Langley's HU-25C research airplane takes off from the adjacent Langley Air Force Base in Hampton, Va. Credit: NASA/Sean Smith.

A NASA research airplane has taken wing for Greenland, where it is joining an extensive airborne survey of Earth's polar ice. NASA Langley Research Center in Hampton, Va., deployed its newly acquired HU-25C Guardian jet as part of NASA's Operation IceBridge.

IceBridge will yield an unprecedented three-dimensional view of the rapidly changing features of Arctic and Antarctic ice sheets, ice shelves and sea ice. Studies by NASA and others generally show that Earth's polar ice is shrinking as temperatures are rising globally, with many long-term climate impacts.

The multi-year mission, which began in 2009, has been using airborne instruments to map Arctic and Antarctic areas once a year and is led by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md.

IceBridge flights are conducted March through May over Greenland and in October-November over Antarctica. Other smaller airborne surveys around the world are also part of the campaign.

The HU-25C will fly first to Thule, Greenland, for research flights before moving to Kangerlussuaq in the south. Scientists from Goddard, Langley and NASA Headquarters in Washington, D.C., arrived in Thule yesterday via military aircraft. [Today], two pilots and two crew members from Langley departed in the HU-25C.

A P-3B research airplane already is at work in the Arctic, having flown to Greenland in mid March with an array of instruments for measuring ice surface elevation and thickness, and snow depth. The P-3B is based at NASA's Wallops Flight Facility on Virginia's Eastern Shore.

LVIS in the House
Onboard the HU-25C is an instrument called LVIS (Land, Vegetation, and Ice Sensor), a scanning laser altimeter. The instrument will be flown over target areas to collect data on Arctic surface topography.

Last year, a Langley King Air turboprop carried LVIS to Greenland for Goddard, which designed and operates the instrument. IceBridge will be the HU-25C's first NASA mission, and it will play a critical role surveying sea ice near coastal areas of Greenland.

The HU-25C has three advantages over the King Air, said Bruce Fisher, of Langley's Research Services Directorate. "It can go farther, faster, higher. You cover more territory in the same amount of time than the King Air. So you get considerably more bang for the buck."

Northwest Passage
The HU-25C will be able to penetrate the northern extremes of the Northwest Passage to collect data about the changing polar landscape, said Fisher, whose directorate manages Langley's aircraft.

Nestled in the cabin of the airplane in a custom-built mounting structure, LVIS will measure the height of terrain over which it is flown. "It looks through a piece of glass in the bottom of the aircraft," he said. "It's extremely accurate."

LVIS is a scanning laser altimeter, which measures the range from the instrument to a target object. It sends a laser beam at the target, and measures the time it takes for the signal to return from striking it. Knowing the precise time the laser pulse was emitted, and the time it took for the reflection to return, yields the distance.

LVIS is one of nine instruments used in IceBridge.

Langley acquired the HU-25C in November 2011 from the U.S. Coast Guard. Dassault Aircraft built the airplane as a military version of its Falcon business jet.

The HU-25C has a range of about 2,000 miles (3,219 kilometers), a cruising speed of 466 miles per hour (750 kilometers per hour) and a maximum altitude of 42,000 feet (12,802 meters). For the IceBridge mission, it will fly between 28,000 and 37,000 feet (8,534 and 11,278 meters) while LVIS scans the Earth's surface.

.


Related Links
Langley Research Center
Beyond the Ice Age






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





ICE WORLD
Voyage to the 'front line' of global warming
Hong Kong (AFP) May 7, 2012
When Cameron Dueck set sail to the Canadian Arctic to witness what he calls "the front line of climate change", he did so knowing he would have to brave seas that have killed scores of sailors and reduced men to cannibals. For 450 years before the first successful voyage in 1906, people sought the Northwest Passage, a potentially lucrative shipping route linking Europe to Asia that would cut ... read more


ICE WORLD
Munich Re reports return to profit after tsunami blow

Clinton to leave China for Bangladesh cauldron

Japan to go nuclear-free for first time since 1970

S. Korea starts building new nuclear reactors

ICE WORLD
Life-size, 3D hologram-like telepods may revolutionize videoconferencing

Fewer toxic toys and textiles in EU stores

Colors burst into contemporary architecture

Flying 3D eye-bots

ICE WORLD
Another dam project approved for Patagonia: official

Nutrient supply after algal bloom determines the succession of the bacterial population

Dry rivers, vibrant with culture and life

NOAA discovers way to detect low-level exposure to seafood toxin in marine animals

ICE WORLD
NASA Langley Aircraft Joins Operation IceBridge

Reykjavik denies approving Chinese tycoon land lease

Voyage to the 'front line' of global warming

Antarctic waters changing due to climate: study

ICE WORLD
Modern hybrid corn makes better use of nitrogen

Different recipes for success in the world of plants

G8 urged to elevate food security issues

Selenium impacts honey bee behavior and survival

ICE WORLD
Mexico launches national tsunami warning system

GPS on commercial ships could improve tsunami warnings

Swamped Nepal village dug out after deadly floods

Unique insight into Chile's coastal ecosystem before and after 2010 earthquake

ICE WORLD
Mali crisis could threaten global security: UN refugee chief

W. Africa bloc threatens coup leaders in Mali, G. Bissau

Boko Haram targets media in Nigeria

Zimbabwe PM calls for reforms before election

ICE WORLD
Emotion Reversed In Left-Handers' Brains Holds New Implications For Treatment Of Anxiety And Depression

Darwinian selection continues to influence human evolution

Iceman mummy yields oldest blood seen

Genes shed light on spread of agriculture in Stone Age Europe




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement