ER-2 Flight: 96112

Date: May 4, 1996

Mission: Coordinated flight between ER-2, DC-8, TC-39, B757, and ARM aircraft over ARM CART site during time of NOAA-14 satellite satellite overpass. Remote sensing of contrails with in situ sampling

Mission Objectives

T-39 and DC-8 coordinated flight patterns to sample contrails of B757 with the ER-2 above. ARM aircraft were also part of the science mission. Underfly the NOAA-14 satellite to assist in the development of algorithms for satellite remote sensing of contrails.

Flight Summary

The ER-2 took off at 1700 UTC and landed at 2140 UTC. ER-2 flew to ARM CART site and flew racetrack pattern in the principle plane of the sun and then met up with the other aircraft. ER-2 flew a racetrack pattern stacked with other aircrafts oriented approximately 280 and 100 degrees. On first southern leg of the race track ATC redirected DC-8 and B757, the ER-2 followed to stay in stack formation with other aircraft. On the eastern end of the northern leg of the racetrack the ER-2 broke away to make runs in the principal plane of the sun, and met up with the other planes on the southern leg. ER-2 heading was with respect to the principle plane of the sun at the following approximate times 1733-1740 UTC; 1743-1754 UTC; 1850-1852 UTC; 1856-1901 UTC; 1944-1947 UTC; 1951-1955 UTC 2044-2045 UTC; 2047-2053 UTC. Three race track patterns were executed.


ER-2 flying between the B757 and DC-8 during at least two legs. DC-8 in contrail of B757 for a large portion of the flight.

Instrument Status

Additional Pilot Notes: Broken low level clouds east of the ARM CART site, no low level clouds over the site. Contrails were made throughout the mission with no naturally occuring cirrus (this was observed over the Salina area along with low clouds). DC-8 contrails were approximately 20-25 miles long. ER-2 was behind the DC-8 during the 180000-180330 UTC run. During the run between 1813-1847 ER-2 was between the B757 and the DC-8. Also between the B757 and DC-8 during the first 80 miles of the 202400-204245 UTC leg. Three miles behind the B757 during 1927 and 1943 UTC run. Ahead of all planes during satellite overpass.