Mission to rule the winds

The NCAS Lidar “Flossy” has been helping a European Space Agency (ESA) Earth Explorer Core Mission, ADM-Aerolus.

The mission ADM-Aerolus, named after the ruler of the winds in greek mythology is a newly designed satellite designed to improve the accuracy of global wind profiles and so improving the accuracy of climate and weather forecasting and our knowledge of climate dynamics.

Ryan Neely (Lecturer of Observation Atmospheric Science in NCAS and ICAS) has been at Summit Station (72° 36'N, 38° 25'W, 3250m), with Flossy atop the Greenland Ice Sheet helping the DLR, ESA andNASA scientists validate a satellite test instrument that is flown on aircraft for this campaign.  The NCAS lidar is providing” truth” for them. 

Here is link to their satellite and mission:


While doing this they are also making the first continuous measurements of the entire boundary layer over the Greenland Ice sheet with a Doppler Aerosol Wind lidar. This should provide us with new insights on the dynamics of the boundary layer.   It is in coordination with the ICECAPS project described below.

Follow progress on twitter:


Follow the ESA blog at:


Summit Station:

Summit Camp is located at the peak of the Greenland Ice Sheet at 72°35'46.4"N 38°25'19.1”W and 10,530 ft elevation (~3.2km above mean sea level). Summit is a scientific research station sponsored by the National Science Foundation.  The population of the station is typically five in wintertime, and has peaked at 55 in the summer.

Summit Camp was originally established in April 1989 in support of the Greenland Ice Sheet Project Two (GISP2) deep ice coring effort. Now Summit is a world renown research station with instruments from around the world that measure the atmosphere, surface and ice year round. 

Info about Summit:



Data from Summit:




ICECAPS Observatory at Summit:

In the spring of 2010, the ongoing measurements at Summit Station (72° 36'N, 38° 25'W, 3250m), atop the Greenland Ice Sheet, were significantly enhanced with new capabilities to observe cloud and atmosphere properties. These upgrades were made by the Integrated Characterization of Energy, Clouds, Atmospheric state, and Precipitation at Summit (ICECAPS) project, which is collaboratively-lead by the Universities of Colorado, Idaho, Wisconsin, and Oklahoma. New instruments at the site include: cloud radar, depolarization lidar, micropulse lidar, infrared spectrometer, two microwave radiometers, ceilometer, precipitation occurrence sensor, and a twice-daily radiosonde program. The ICECAPS program will continue through summer of 2019 at a minimum. Overall programmatic and logistical support for these operations is provided by the National Science Foundation. Additional instrumental support is provided by the NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory, the DOE Atmospheric Radiation Measurement Program, and Environment Canada.

Further Information:

Ryan Neely:

I am a Lecturer of Observational Atmospheric Science at the University of Leeds in the National Centre for Atmospheric Science (NCAS) and Institute for Atmospheric and Climate Science (ICAS) within the School of Earth and Environment (SEE). http://www.see.leeds.ac.uk/people/r.neely





The lidar: