Developments in the remote detection of trace gases in the atmosphere using Differential Absorption Lidar have been driven largely by improvements in two key technologies: lasers and detectors. We have designed and built a narrow linewidth pulsed laser source with a well-controlled output wavelength and sufficient pulse energy to measure the concentration profile of CO2 and CH4 to a range in excess of 4km. We describe here the initial measurements of concentration profiles recorded with this instrument.
The system is built around a custom-designed Newtonian telescope with a 40cm diameter primary mirror. Laser sources and detectors attach directly to the side of the telescope allowing for flexible customization with a range of additional equipment. The instrument features an all-solid-state laser source based on an optical parametric oscillator (OPO) pumped by an YLF based diode-laser pumped solid-state laser and seeded by a tuned DFB seed. This provides a range of available wavelengths suitable for DIAL within the 1.5-1.6 m spectral region. The output of the OPO is beam expanded and transmitted coaxially from the receiver telescope. A gas cell within the laser source controls the seed wavelength and allows the wavelength to be tuned to match a specific absorption feature of the selected gas species. The source can be rapidly tuned between the on-line and off-line wavelengths to make a DIAL measurement of either CO2 or CH4
The receiver is based on an InGaAs avalanche photodetector. Whilst photodiode detectors are a low-cost solution their limited sensitivity restricts the maximum range over which a signal can be detected. The receiver signal is digitised for subsequent processing to produce a sightline concentration profile.
The instrument is mounted on a robust gimballed mount providing full directional movement within the upper hemisphere. Both static pointing and angular scan modes are available. Accurate angular position is available giving the sightline vector and supporting the interpretation of the concentration profile.
Initial measurements have been made in the planetary boundary layer above the City of Edinburgh and these will be presented and discussed. Earlier measurements demonstrated that the signal from atmospheric scatter could be detected at ranges in excess of 6km. The later measurements have shown scatter signals at greater ranges, but with increasing noise at the longer ranges. This is expected as the signal decreases with the inverse of the range whereas the noise remains effectively constant. Range resolved concentration profiles for sightline vectors lying within an angular sector have been used to create a 3D map of concentration for that volume. This will be presented and discussed.
Daniel Budinov, Robert Clements, Cameron F. Rae, John B. Moncrieff, and James W. Jack, "A differential absorption lidar instrument for the measurment of carbon dioxide and methane in the lower troposphere (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10006, Lidar Technologies, Techniques, and Measurements for Atmospheric Remote Sensing XII, 1000604 (Presented at SPIE Remote Sensing: September 26, 2016; Published: 2 December 2016); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2242004.5229527680001.
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