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Open-path dual-comb spectroscopy to an airborne retroreflector



Kevin C. Cossel, Eleanor M. Waxman, Fabrizio R. Giorgetta, Michael A. Cermak, Dan Hesselius, Shalom Ruben, William C. Swann, Gregory B. Rieker, Nathan R. Newbury


We demonstrate a new technique for spatial mapping of multiple atmospheric gas species. This system is based on high-precision dual-comb spectroscopy to a retroreflector mounted on a flying multicopter. We measure the atmospheric absorption over long open-air paths to the multicopter with comb-tooth resolution over 1.57–1.66 μm, covering absorption bands of CO2, CH4, H2O, and isotopologues. When combined with GPS-based path length measurements, a fit of the absorption spectra retrieves the dry mixing ratios versus position. Under well-mixed atmospheric conditions, retrievals from both horizontal and vertical paths show stable mixing ratios as expected. This approach can support future boundary layer studies as well as plume detection and source location.
Created July 20, 2017, Updated November 10, 2018