Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

NASA Technology Takes Off Into Dark And Stormy Nights

Date:
May 11, 2001
Source:
National Aeronautics And Space Administration
Summary:
NASA will use an Uninhabited Aerial Vehicle, or "UAV," for a research mission to better understand how lightning forms and dissipates during thunderstorms. The remotely piloted, high-flying aircraft will fly above and around the dangerous disturbances, gauging the various elements that unleash the fury of storms.

NASA will use an Uninhabited Aerial Vehicle, or "UAV," for a research mission to better understand how lightning forms and dissipates during thunderstorms. The remotely piloted, high-flying aircraft will fly above and around the dangerous disturbances, gauging the various elements that unleash the fury of storms.

Related Articles


Part of NASA's UAV-based science demonstration program, these flights will show the ability of this type of aircraft to carry Earth-viewing scientific payloads into environments where an onboard pilot would be exposed to life-threatening hazards. This capability will benefit both U.S. scientific and commercial objectives well into the new millennium.

The mission will utilize the ALTUS UAV, built by General Atomics, San Diego, CA, taking advantage of its remotely piloted capability, along with its high altitude (up to 55,000 feet) and slow speed. Researchers from the University of Alabama at Huntsville, with colleagues from NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD, will chase down thunderstorms in Florida to better understand the relationship between storms and lightning. When a developing storm is spotted at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, researchers will send the ALTUS above and around the storm, while the remote pilots remain safely on the ground.

"This mission combines the exciting use of UAV technology with sound science to unravel the mystery behind lightning and its relationship to violent storms -- information that will help those who predict these events as well as the public and infrastructure affected," said Dr. Ghassem Asrar, Associate Administrator for Earth Sciences at NASA Headquarters, Washington, DC.

Using precision instruments aboard the aircraft, researchers will take measurements to determine lightning potential of the storms in the hopes of better understanding how different physical characteristics in the atmosphere can contribute to development of lightning. These data will increase understanding of lightning and storms, while providing federal, state and local governments new disaster-management information for use in the areas of severe storms, floods and wild fires.

This is one of two projects selected from 45 proposals received in response to a solicitation issued in 2000. The solicitation requires that the missions be managed in "Principal Investigator" mode: Each mission's lead investigator is responsible for choosing the UAV best suited for the experiment, and then managing all aspects of the mission for NASA. NASA has identified approximately $8 million to fund the two UAV missions over a period of four years.

The mission is part of NASA's Earth Science Enterprise, a long-term research effort aimed at understanding how human-induced and natural changes affect our global environment, while providing practical societal benefits to America today. The Earth Science Enterprise provides the sound science needed by policy and economic decision-makers to assure responsible stewardship of the global environment.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by National Aeronautics And Space Administration. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

National Aeronautics And Space Administration. "NASA Technology Takes Off Into Dark And Stormy Nights." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 May 2001. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/05/010511072551.htm>.
National Aeronautics And Space Administration. (2001, May 11). NASA Technology Takes Off Into Dark And Stormy Nights. ScienceDaily. Retrieved January 30, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/05/010511072551.htm
National Aeronautics And Space Administration. "NASA Technology Takes Off Into Dark And Stormy Nights." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/05/010511072551.htm (accessed January 30, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Earth & Climate News

Friday, January 30, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Rare Clouds Fill Grand Canyon

Raw: Rare Clouds Fill Grand Canyon

AP (Jan. 29, 2015) For the second time in two months, a rare weather phenomenon filled the Grand Canyon with thick clouds just below the rim on Wednesday. (Jan. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Senate Passes Bill for Keystone XL Pipeline

Senate Passes Bill for Keystone XL Pipeline

AP (Jan. 29, 2015) The Republican-controlled Senate has passed a bipartisan bill approving construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline. (Jan. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
"Cloud Inversion" In Grand Canyon

"Cloud Inversion" In Grand Canyon

Reuters - US Online Video (Jan. 29, 2015) Time lapse video captures a blanket of clouds amassing in the Grand Canyon -- the result of a rare meteorological process called "cloud inversion." Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Why Researchers Say We Should Cut Back On Biofuels

Why Researchers Say We Should Cut Back On Biofuels

Newsy (Jan. 29, 2015) Biofuels aren&apos;t the best alternative to fossil fuels, according to a new report. In fact, they&apos;re quite a bad one. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins