Articles | Volume 6, issue 7
Atmos. Meas. Tech., 6, 1761–1776, 2013
Atmos. Meas. Tech., 6, 1761–1776, 2013

Research article 23 Jul 2013

Research article | 23 Jul 2013

Calibration and validation of the advanced E-Region Wind Interferometer

S. K. Kristoffersen1, W. E. Ward1, S. Brown2, and J. R. Drummond3 S. K. Kristoffersen et al.
  • 1Department of Physics, University of New Brunswick, Fredericton, NB, E3B 5A3, Canada
  • 2CRESS Space Instrumentation Laboratory CSIL, York University, 4700 Keele St. Toronto, ON, M3J 1P3, Canada
  • 3Department of Physics and Atmospheric Science, Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS, B3H 4R2, Canada

Abstract. The advanced E-Region Wind Interferometer (ERWIN II) combines the imaging capabilities of a CCD detector with the wide field associated with field-widened Michelson interferometry. This instrument is capable of simultaneous multi-directional wind observations for three different airglow emissions (oxygen green line (O(1S)) at a height of ~97 km, the PQ(7) and P(7) emission lines in the O2(0–1) atmospheric band at ~93 km and P1(3) emission line in the (6, 2) hydroxyl Meinel band at ~87 km) on a three minute cadence. In each direction, for 45 s measurements for typical airglow volume emission rates, the instrument is capable of line-of-sight wind precisions of ~1 m s−1 for hydroxyl and O(1S) and ~4 m s−1 for O2. This precision is achieved using a new data analysis algorithm which takes advantage of the imaging capabilities of the CCD detector along with knowledge of the instrument phase variation as a function of pixel location across the detector. This instrument is currently located in Eureka, Nunavut as part of the Polar Environment Atmospheric Research Laboratory (PEARL) (80°N, 86° W). The details of the physical configuration, the data analysis algorithm, the measurement calibration and validation of the observations from December 2008 and January 2009 are described. Field measurements which demonstrate the capabilities of this instrument are presented. To our knowledge, the wind determinations with this instrument are the most accurate and have the highest observational cadence for airglow wind observations of this region of the atmosphere and match the capabilities of other wind-measuring techniques.