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Instrument: NAST-M : NPOESS Aircraft Sounder Testbed-Microwave Radiometer
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The new M.I.T. Microwave Temperature Sounder (MTS), which is
designated NAST-M when flown as the microwave component of the NPOESS
Aircraft Sounding Testbed, is a complete upgrade of the MTS instrument
which has been flown by M.I.T. on NASA ER- 2 aircraft since 1988. (ref
Gasiewski) This package consists of two radiometers: the first with
eight single-sideband channels between 50 and 57 GHz and the second
with nine double-sideband channels within 4 GHz of the 118.75 oxygen
line. The instrument block diagram is shown in Figure 1. Channel
passbands are listed in table 1. Both radiometers have scalar
feedhorns with 7.5 0 3-dB beamwidths and a shared mirror scans pattern
of 18 spots from -65 0 to +65 0 from nadir, two black-body calibration
loads and a chimney-view of zenith during a nominal 6.5-second
scan. This scan pattern provides abutting beams across track and beams
also overlap along track at distances greater than 10 km from the
aircraft at the ER-2's flight velocity of 210 m/s. Scan speeds can be
adjusted to achieve other overlaps in beam coverage, but the nominal
pattern has an integration time on the order of 100 ms per spot and
yields data at a rate of less than 2 kB per second or 7.2 MB per hour.

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[Text adapted from the NASA/ARC Home Page]

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