The RAIDS experiment is a suite of eight instruments to be flown aboard the Japanese Experiment Module-Exposed Facility on the International Space Station (ISS) in late 2009. Originally designed, built, and integrated onto the NOAA TIROS-J satellite in 1993, the original RAIDS hardware and the mission objectives have been modified for this ISS flight opportunity. In this paper we describe the four near infrared instruments on the RAIDS experiment covering the wavelength range of 630 - 870 nm. Over the past two years these instruments have undergone modification, refurbishment, and testing in preparation for flight. We present updated sensor characteristics relevant to this new ISS mission and discuss performance stability in light of the long instrument storage period.
The four instruments, operating in a limb scanning geometry, will be used to observe the spectral radiance of atomic and molecular emission from the Earth's upper atmospheric airglow. The passbands of the photometers are centered on the atomic lines OI(777.4), OI[630.0], and the 0-0 band of O2 Atmospheric band at 765 nm. The spectrometer scans from 725 to 870 nm. These observations will be used in conjunction with the other RAIDS instruments to investigate the properties of the lower thermosphere and to improve understanding of the connections of the region to the space
environment, solar energy flux and the lower atmosphere. These studies are fundamentally important to the understanding the effects of the atmosphere and ionosphere on space systems and their operation in areas such as satellite drag, communications and navigation.