Radially classified aerosol detector for aircraft-based submicron aerosol measurements

Lynn M. Russell, Shou Hua Zhang, Richard C. Flagan, John H. Seinfeld, Mark R. Stolzenburg, Robert Caldow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


A radially classified aerosol detector (RCAD) for fast characterization of fine particle size distributions aboard aircraft has been designed and implemented. The measurement system includes a radial differential mobility analyzer and a high-flow, high-efficiency condensation nuclei counter based on modifications to a commercial model (TSI, model 3010). Variations in pressure encountered during changes in altitude in flight are compensated by feedback control of volumetric flow rates with a damped proportional control algorithm. Sampling resolution is optimized with the use of an automated dual-bag sampling system. This new system has been tested aboard the University of Washington C131a research aircraft to demonstrate its in-flight performance capabilities. The system was used to make measurements of aerosol, providing observations of the spatial variability within the cloud-topped boundary layer off the coast of Monterey, California.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)598-609
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Atmospheric and Oceanic Technology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 1996
Externally publishedYes


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