ACES Mission Debrief 08/04/02

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Mission Debrief

Flight Number: 85

Debrief Author: Kim

Date: 08/04/02

Pilot: McDermitt

Launch Time: 17:14:00

Land Time: 20:16:00

EDOT Status: Operational

Do not know full status

Miami Nexrad Status: Operational

Key West Nexrad Status: Operational

NPOL Status: Operational

It is not operational yet

Mission Description:
Fly to the Everglades to investigate Thunderstorms.

Mission Objective:
This is the first science mission flight and will be a science mission checkout flight as well. The range and altitude of a typical science mission will be tested.

Mission Summary:
Take off at 1714 UTC and landing at 2016 UTC for a total duration of 3 hours. The maximum altitude of the aircraft was ~52 kft. The Altus flew to the Everglades destination within 1.5 hours and located a thunderstorm in the western part of the Everglades. The first pass over the storm occurred at 1850 UTC and the final pass occured at 1917 UTC with a total of 4 passes over the storm at ~50 kft. At 1917 UTC a servoboard temperature read below 0 degrees C and in turn affected the power to the payload, the C-band Transponder, and the inner cooler pump that initiated a return to base. It took 1 hour to return to base. Initial assessment of the data obtained shows great promise and the Altus was able to stay in proximity of this active thunderstorm for 27 minutes.

Instruments/Aircraft/Ground Assets:
Intermittent problems on the 3 field mills on top of the aircraft and assessing the situation.
Aircraft situation is being assessed with two possible solutions and the aircraft could possibly be ready for flight by tomorrow morning.
The weather display with the aircraft tracking proved to be an invaluable tool to the pilot as well as the ground team.


Total Flight Time: 3 Hours 2 Minutes


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