MONTBLEX tower observations: Instrumentation, data acquisition and data quality
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Tower platforms, with instrumentation at six levels above the surface to a height of 30 m, were used to record various atmospheric parameters in the surface layer. Sensors for measuring both mean and fluctuating quantities were used, with the majority of them indigenously built. Soil temperature sensors up to a depth of 30 cm from the surface were among the variables connected to the mean data logger. A PC-based data acquisition system built at the Centre for Atmospheric Sciences, IISc, was used to acquire the data from fast response sensors. This paper reports the various components of a typical MONTBLEX tower observatory and describes the actual experiments carried out in the surface layer at four sites over the monsoon trough region as a part of the MONTBLEX programme. It also describes and discusses several checks made on randomly selected tower data sets acquired during the experiment. Checks made include visual inspection of time traces from various sensors, comparative plots of sensors measuring the same variable, wind and temperature profile plots, calculation of roughness lengths, statistical and stability parameters, diurnal variation of stability parameters, and plots of probability density and energy spectrum for the different sensors. Results from these checks are found to be very encouraging and reveal the potential for further detailed analysis to understand more about surface layer characteristics.
KeywordsAtmospheric surface layer sensors tower instrumentation data quality
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