ARL Weekly News – April 2, 2021

Upcoming Events

LIDAR Installation with NIST Planned for Mid-April.

A joint NOAA and NIST research project will install a LIDAR instrument in the Department of Commerce’s Hoover Building in Washington, DC alongside NOAA’s existing meteorological network. The LIDAR measures wind speed and direction at different heights and will complement ARL’s existing meteorology package (DCNET) that is used to understand the meteorology and atmospheric transport and dispersion in urban environments.

ARL has been closely collaborating with NIST, NOAA OAR labs (GML/CSL) and other university partners including UMD and Univ. of Utah on atmospheric dispersion and transport in HYSPLIT that is used in the atmospheric simulations and of greenhouse gas (GHG) emission modeling in urban areas. The wind LIDAR measurement project on the Hoover Building is one example of this collaboration. These meteorological measurements will significantly enhance our understanding of GHG emissions within an urban core where we cannot perform aircraft observations due to security restrictions.

NIST is working with CSL’s Alan Brewer primarily to understand GHG emissions from cities. Part of an urban testbed, the DC location will join the Northeast Corridor. The testbed is designed to isolate the anthropogenic GHG emissions in urban areas along the U.S. East Coast from other sources (cities, oil and gas development, coal mines, and power plants). NIST originally considered adding the LIDAR to their facility in upper Northwest DC, but the complementary data from DCNET sharing adds more potential to the research endeavor.

In Mid-April the installation will begin on top of the Hoover Building, culminating a long effort to get approvals from NIST, NOAA, the Secret Service, and the FAA.

Senate Commerce Committee briefing

ARL Directors Ariel F. Stein and LaToya Myles will brief Senator Marsha Blackburn’s office (R-TN) on April 14 for an overview of the Laboratory; ARL’s Atmospheric Turbulence and Diffusion Division (ATDD) division is located in Oak Ridge, TN. Senator Blackburn recently joined the Senate Commerce Committee and its Subcommittee on Oceans, Fisheries, Climate Change, and Manufacturing, which oversees NOAA.


Recent Events

Southern Appalachian Science and Engineering Fair

Ed Dumas, Temple Lee, and T.J. Schuyler participated as judges in the 70th Southern Appalachian Science and Engineering Fair at UT on Monday, March 29, 2021. Like last year, this year’s fair was held virtually and included science projects from students in grades 6 through 12 from a variety of schools located throughout the East Tennessee area.

Ed judged for a national NOAA award and Temple and TJ judged for three awards given by the Smoky Mountain Chapter of the American Meteorological Society.

The first project of note was from the junior division, and was a method of CO2 capture from vehicle exhaust using the dry carbonate process. The student made a small device that literally goes up the tailpipe of a car and captures CO2 emitted from the vehicle and stores it in a filter. The second project of note was from the senior division and the student used spatial pattern and correlation analysis to understand the relationship of city structure on the urban heat island intensity (UHI) across the US. Both of these students skillfully presented their projects and were worthy of their awards!