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HIWC-FL: HIWC Radar Study


The purpose of the High Ice Water Content (HIWC) Radar Study is to record both instrumented weather and standard radar data in known HIWC conditions, then see if by comparing the data, a potential HIWC radar signature can be identified. 

Current weather radar can detect rain, hail or ice particles, but is limited in its ability to discern which types and sizes of ice crystals are in the atmosphere. When ice crystals hit warm aircraft engines, they start to melt and evaporate, cooling the engine core surfaces to temperatures below freezing. This enables the melted ice crystal water to refreeze, causing ice to acccumulate inside the engine core. Ice in this location may cause temporary power loss or engine blade damage.

For three weeks, a combined government-industry team will fly NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center's DC-8 research aircraft in and around bad weather, including tropical storms, in search of conditions that produce ice crystal icing conditions at high altitude. Researchers will use the data to develop technology that can be used onboard commercial aircraft to avoid high ice water content conditions and provide a safer flight for passengers.

Data access

Datasets from this project

Temporal coverage

Begin Date 2015-08-10 00:00:00
End Date 2015-08-30 23:59:59

Spatial coverage

Maximum (North) Latitude: 40.00, Minimum (South) Latitude: 10.00
Minimum (West) Longitude: -140.00, Maximum (East) Longitude: -45.00