Mission Status & Events

Commissioning Update From Aquarius PI Gary Lagerloef: Transmitting On All Three Beams Imminent
[23-Aug-11] Tuesday, the instrument team and the calibration working group verified that the radiometer signatures were unaffected at the time that the scatterometer solid state power amplifier (SSPA) was turned on late Monday. So far so good. Later in the day, we began to transmit with the radar on beam 3 (outer beam). The preliminary assessment from the first two orbits is that the radar data are as expected with appropriate responses over the ocean. The first look at the radiometer response also shows no interference from the radar. On Wednesday we plan to start transmitting on all three beams. From that point on, Aquarius will be in normal science operating mode. We are almost there...

The calibration team continues to do excellent work on the preliminary data analysis, including refining the wind speed effect, bias estimates and finding a problem with the galactic reflection correction. The calibration biases appear to be quite stable over the first 35 orbits based on a couple of different analysis methods.