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Center Independent Research & Development: GSFC IRAD

Compact Formaldehyde Fluorescence Instrument

Completed Technology Project

Project Introduction

Compact Formaldehyde Fluorescence Instrument

The successful completion of this IRAD will deliver a fully functional instrument at TRL 6.  The key characteristics that we will demonstrate are simplicity, low cost, small size, and sufficient sensitivity to measure formaldehyde in the troposphere.  Our goal is to reduce the size and cost by a factor of three compared to our existing In Situ Airborne Formaldehyde (ISAF) instrument while sacrificing a factor of ten in sensitivity.  To maximize the value of this IRAD, we plan on testing the instrument on an aircraft.  Our target flight opportunity will be the Atlas jet operated at NASA Ames.  The Ames AJAX project (Atlas Jet Atmospheric eXperiment) is designed to validate OCO-2 with weekly flights. The same flights can be used for validating OMI on Aura and TEMPO (the recently selected Venture-1) by including measurements of formaldehyde, ozone, and CO.

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