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Institute for Applied Physics "Nello Carrara"
Italian National Research Council
Department of Earth Observation


Inversion Problems and Data Assimilation






MIPAS special modes






MIPAS Special Modes

Development of algorithms for the exploitation of MIPAS Special Modes measurements.

The Michelson Interferometer for Passive Atmospheric Sounding (MIPAS) is an high resolution Fourier Transform Spectrometer developed by ESA for the detection of limb emission spectra in the upper atmosphere. It is a powerful tool to measure vertical profiles of trace species on a global scale. MIPAS has been successfully launched on board Envisat-1, on 1st March 2002.

For about the 80% of its measuring time MIPAS operates in the “nominal” observation mode that is rear viewing along the track of the orbit with limb-scanning sequences spanning from 6 km to 68 km in tangent altitude. For the remaining 20% of measuring time MIPAS operates in the so called “special modes”, that are designed for the study of specific geographic regions (such as polar regions in winter time) or special events (such as volcanic eruptions).

ESA provides level-2 data only for the nominal observation mode, while for the special modes only level-1 data (that is calibrated spectra) are provided to the end users.

The aim of this ESA supported study is the development of a prototype software system for the exploitation of MIPAS special mode measurements.

A guideline of this study is to avoid as much as possible the refinement or re-adaptation of existing algorithms and instead to overcome their main limits by introducing new solutions that will represent an advancement with respect to the existing (and commonly adopted) analysis systems.

This study is lead by the Dipartimento di Chimica Fisica ed Inorganica of the University of Bologna.



Geophysical validation tests