ER-2 Flight: 96113

Date: May 7, 1996

Mission: Persistent contrails mission with coordinated flight between ER-2, DC-8, TC-39, and B757 over Nebraska panhandle. NOAA-14 satellite overpass east of flight region at 1940 UTC.

Mission Objectives

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

Flight Summary

The ER-2 launched at 1730 UTC and landed at 2330 UTC. ER-2 flew back and forth along 130 nm track oriented 250/70 true. Track covered 100 nm DC-8 track with additional 30 nm segment upwind for sampling background conditions. Persistent contrails, midlevel cloud and some cirrus present. ER-2 had visual of B-757 and DC-8 on several legs and observed contrails on several legs including meandering back and forth over young B-757 contrail from 2050 to 2057 UTC. During coordination, DC-8 doing radiation measurements, T-39 sampling B-757 contrail. ER-2 also observed aged contrails, reported as long as 100 nm in length. T-39 broke off after 1 complete DC-8 racetrack. Last flight leg of ER-2 run at slightly off 70 true to make crossing of contrail for CALS instrument. Total of 8 tracks flown by ER-2.

ER-2 met B-757 and DC-8 flying in opposite direction at 19:39:19 UTC for 1940 UTC NOAA-14 overpass..


ER-2 flying between the B-757 and DC-8 from 2050 to 2057 UTC observing young B-757 contrail. Contrail visible in MAS data. ER-2 observed contrails ranging in length from 10 to 100 nm and in age from less than a minute to over 10 minutes old. ER-2 above B-757 and DC-8 at 19:39:19 UTC for NOAA-14 overpass at 1940 UTC

Instrument Status

Additional Pilot Notes: Not much cirrus present; clear visual of B-757 and DC-8 during visual contact. ER-2 and B-757/DC-8 were coordinated in stacked flight on first 250 true leg but ER-2 pilot was unable to find B-757 or DC-8 visually. ER-2 started initial coordination of first leg about 1.5 minutes behind B-757 and DC-8 and finished the leg ahead of the B-757 and DC-8. ER-2 passed between the B-757 and DC-8 at about 20:25:50 and 21:30going in opposite direction.