ARL and Belfort Instrument Company Establish a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement

August, 2012

The Air Resources Laboratory (ARL) has entered into a three-year Cooperative Research And Development Agreement (CRADA) with the Belfort Instrument Company, beginning August 23, 2012, to evaluate new technology for NOAA’s in-situ climate observing systems. Specific application will be made to the U.S. Climate Reference Network (USCRN). The CRADA represents a public/private partnership with the goal to design, test, and evaluate sensors for the measurement of air temperature and precipitation, as well as other meteorological parameters that are important for climate monitoring.

Background: The Belfort Instrument Company is a leader in the design, manufacture and maintenance of advanced environmental measurement systems. Belfort Instrument designed three new sensors for the Automated Surface Observing System program, a joint effort of the National Weather Service, the Federal Aviation Administration, and the Department of Defense. ARL’s Atmospheric Turbulence and Diffusion Division is the lead laboratory for the design, testing, and evaluation of instruments and establishment of an integrated measurement platform for NOAA’s surface climate observing system. The current USCRN measurement platform is modular and flexible and can accommodate various types of sensors so that the most accurate and cost- effective technologies can be utilized. This CRADA establishes efforts that will allow NOAA to make use of the flexibilities built into USCRN.

Significance: New technologies must be examined to improve the measurement capability of long-term climate observing networks. This CRADA will allow for collaboration on design, performance and engineering of innovative technologies that will be useful to the mission of NOAA’s climate in-situ observing systems. The research will ensure routine and continuous evaluation of new sensors and techniques in support of the timely replacement of sensors to meet the requirements of the climate research community and accepted climate monitoring practices.

For More Information, contact: Tilden Meyers