Received: 07 May 2013 – Accepted for review: 08 May 2013 – Discussion started: 27 May 2013
Abstract. We have developed a new, high time-resolution, microwave heterodyne spectrometer for observations of water vapour in the middle atmosphere. It measures the rotational transition of water vapour at 22.235 GHz in the vertical and horizontal polarisation. The two polarisations are averaged in order to optimise the signal-to-noise ratio. The different polarisations have separate, but identical, signal chains consisting of a 22 GHz cooled HEMT amplifier, a second, warm, 22 GHz HEMT booster amplifier, an IF stage and a Chirp Transform Spectrometer (CTS) backend. Continuous calibration with two internal loads kept at temperatures close to the observed atmosphere, a wobbling optical table to reduce standing waves in the optical path and the low receiver temperature ensures a time resolution of an order of magnitude better than what has been achieved by earlier instruments. The error sources in the retrieved spectrum are discussed and the data is compared and validated against EOS-MLS on the NASA Aura satellite. The profiles are found to be in good agreement with each other.
How to cite. Hallgren, K., Hartogh, P., and Jarchow, C.: A new microwave spectrometer for ground-based observations of water vapour, Atmos. Meas. Tech. Discuss., 6, 4677–4703, https://doi.org/10.5194/amtd-6-4677-2013, 2013.