Rocket Ozone Data Recovery for Digital Archival

Thursday, 18 December 2014
Seung-Hyun Hwang1,2, Arlin J Krueger3, Ernest Hilsenrath3, David P Haffner4 and Pawan K Bhartia1, (1)NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD, United States, (2)KARI Korea Aerospace Research Institute, Daejeon, South Korea, (3)University of Maryland Baltimore County, Baltimore, MD, United States, (4)Science Systems and Applications, Inc., Lanham, MD, United States
Ozone distributions in the photochemically-controlled upper stratosphere and mesosphere were first measured using spectrometers on V-2 rockets after WWII. The IGY(1957-1958) spurred development of new optical and chemical instruments for flight on meteorological and sounding rockets. In the early 1960’s, the US Navy developed an Arcas rocket-borne optical ozonesonde and NASA GSFC developed chemiluminescent ozonesonde onboard Nike_Cajun and Arcas rocket. The Navy optical ozone program was moved in 1969 to GSFC where rocket ozone research was expanded and continued until 1994 using Super Loki-Dart rocket at 11 sites in the range of 0-65N and 35W-160W. Over 300 optical ozone soundings and 40 chemiluminescent soundings were made. The data have been used to produce the US Standard Ozone Atmosphere, determine seasonal and diurnal variations, and validate early photochemical models. The current effort includes soundings conducted by Australia, Japan, and Korea using optical techniques. New satellite ozone sounding techniques were initially calibrated and later validated using the rocket ozone data. As satellite techniques superseded the rocket methods, the sponsoring agencies lost interest in the data and many of those records have been discarded. The current task intends to recover as much of the data as possible from the private records of the experimenters and their publications, and to archive those records in the WOUDC (World Ozone and Ultraviolet Data Centre). The original data records are handwritten tabulations, computer printouts that are scanned with OCR techniques, and plots digitized from publications. This newly recovered digital rocket ozone profile data from 1965 to 2002 could make significant contributions to the Earth science community in atmospheric research including long-term trend analysis.