CAMEX-3 Mission Description

The Convection And Moisture EXperiment (CAMEX) is a series of field research investigations sponsored by Dr. Ramesh Kakar, Program Manager for Atmospheric Dynamics and Remote Sensing at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Headquarters. The overall goal of CAMEX is to study atmospheric water vapor and precipitation processes using a unique array of aircraft, balloon, and land-based remote sensors. The first two CAMEX field studies were conducted at Wallops Island, Virginia, during 1993 and 1995.

The third in the series of CAMEX field studies (CAMEX-3) took place August - September, 1998. This field campaign was devoted to the study of hurricane tracking and intensification using NASA-funded aircraft with remote sensing instrumentation. The NASA ER-2 and DC-8 were utilized along with the University of North Dakota’s Cessna Citation II Research Aircraft.

The remote sensing instrumentation used by NASA during CAMEX-3 yielded high-resolution spatial and temporal information on hurricane structure, dynamics, and motion. These data, analyzed within the context of more traditional aircraft, satellite, and ground-based radar observations, provided additional insight to hurricane modelers and forecasters who continually strive to improve hurricane predictions. The ultimate goal of CAMEX-3 was to provide information which could someday assist in decreasing the size of coastal evacuation areas and increasing the warning time for those areas.

Picture of the CAMEX-3 flight area

Image courtesy of Dr. Wallace McMillan/UMBC

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