CASPER: Coupled Air-Sea Processes and Electromagnetic (EM) ducting Research
de Paolo, T.
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CASPER objective is to improve our capability to characterize the propagation of radio frequency (RF) signals through the marine atmosphere with coordinated efforts in data collection, data analyses, and modeling of the air-sea interaction processes, refractive environment, and RF propagation. The Coupled Air-Sea Processes and Electromagnetic ducting Research (CASPER) project aims to better quantify atmospheric effects on the propagation of radar and communication signals in the marine environment. Such effects are associated with vertical gradients of temperature and water vapor in the marine atmospheric surface layer (MASL) and in the capping inversion of the marine atmospheric boundary layer (MABL), as well as the horizontal variations of these vertical gradients. CASPER field measurements emphasized simultaneous characterization of electromagnetic wave (EM) propagation, the propagation environment, and the physical processes that gave rise to the measured refractivity conditions. CASPER modeling efforts utilized state-of-the-art Large Eddy Simulations (LES) with a dynamically coupled MASL and phase-resolved ocean surface waves. CASPER-East was the first of two planned field campaigns, conducted in October/November 2015 offshore of Duck, North Carolina. This article highlights the scientific motivations and objectives of CASPER and provides an overview of the CASPER-East field campaign. The CASPER-East sampling strategy enabled us to obtain EM propagation loss as well as concurrent environmental refractive conditions along the propagation path. This article highlights the initial results from this sampling strategy showing the range-dependent propagation loss, the atmospheric and upper oceanic variability along the propagation range, and the MASL thermodynamic profiles measured during CASPER-East.
The article of record as published may be found at http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/BAMS-D-16-0046.1
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