In Situ Airborne Formaldehyde (ISAF)


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The NASA GSFC In Situ Airborne Formaldehyde (ISAF) instrument measures formaldehyde on high altitude NASA aircraft. The instrument uses laser induced fluorescence (LIF) to obtain the high detection sensitivity needed to detect formaldehyde in the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere where abundances are 10 parts per trillion. LIF also enables a fast time response needed to measure the abundance of formaldehyde in the finely structured outflow of convective storms. These measurements of formaldehyde will be used elucidate mechanisms of convective transport and quantify the effects of boundary layer pollutants on the ozone photochemistry and cloud microphysics of the upper atmosphere.

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