An overview of the CATS level 1 processing algorithms and data products

Yorks, J., M. McGill, S. P. Palm, D. Hlavka, P. A. Selmer, E. P. Nowottnick, M. Vaughan, S. D. Rodier, and W. Hart (2016), An overview of the CATS level 1 processing algorithms and data products, Geophys. Res. Lett., 43, 4632-4639, doi:10.1002/2016GL068006.

The Cloud-Aerosol Transport System (CATS) is an elastic backscatter lidar that was launched on 10 January 2015 to the International Space Station (ISS). CATS provides both space-based technology demonstrations for future Earth Science missions and operational science measurements. This paper outlines the CATS Level 1 data products and processing algorithms. Initial results and validation data demonstrate the ability to accurately detect optically thin atmospheric layers with 1064 nm nighttime backscatter as low as 5.0E5 km1 sr1. This sensitivity, along with the orbital characteristics of the ISS, enables the use of CATS data for cloud and aerosol climate studies. The near-real-time downlinking and processing of CATS data are unprecedented capabilities and provide data that have applications such as forecasting of volcanic plume transport for aviation safety and aerosol vertical structure that will improve air quality health alerts globally.

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Radiation Science Program (RSP)