Attached is a shot from last week doing dropsonde testing on the NASA DC-8 (based out of Palmdale, CA), while NASA Goddard scientists look on. While in the end we retrieved the high altitude wind data we were chasing after, it was a slightly frustrating day as only two of our five prototypes performed as expected. What we learned on that flight should lead to success on an upcoming DC-8 mission over Iceland this May called “Icebridge”
Curious fact: Greenland’s one-to-two mile thick ice sheet, if completely melted, would raise worldwide sea level by a mind-numbing 24 feet.
Later this summer Navy will deploy our dropsondes over active Atlantic/gulf hurricanes via the NASA WB-57, flying at the staggering altitude of 60,000′. Our research is aimed at improving hurricane forecasting skill to the level where people have enough confidence to move out of harm’s way before it hits.
– Mark Beaubien