Polar ionic conductivity profile in fair weather conditions. Terrestrial test of the Huygens/Hasi-PWA instrument aboard the Comas Sola balloon - Archive ouverte HAL Access content directly
Journal Articles Journal of Atmospheric and Terrestrial Physics Year : 2001

Polar ionic conductivity profile in fair weather conditions. Terrestrial test of the Huygens/Hasi-PWA instrument aboard the Comas Sola balloon

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Abstract

The permittivity wave and altimetry (PWA) instrument is a part of the CASSINI/HUYGENS HASI experiment and was designed to determine the electrical parameters of the atmosphere of Titan in 2004. In December 1995, a balloon campaign was conducted in León, Spain, to test the HASI onboard hardware and software using a HUYGENS probe mock-up in an electromagnetic-disturbance-free environment (mainly from power emission lines at 50Hz). This work is concerned with the measurements of small ion polar conductivities and DC fields using the PWA relaxation probes (RP). The two RP electrodes were periodically set to +/-5V relative to the conductive surface of the mock-up and allowed to discharge in the surrounding atmosphere. The polar components of conductivity are calculated from the discharge time, and the DC field from the floating potential differences once the electrodes reach equilibrium. In spite of some observed effects, such as mock-up charging or oscillations in the measurement of potential, the conductivity measurements are coherent and in good agreement with the obtained results in other experiments. The conductivity data were collected in `fair-weather' conditions, up to 30km during a 4-h flight, every 72s, giving an altitude resolution better than 400m. We also discuss the DC field data that do not lead, in presence of charging effects, to a straightforward measurement of the natural DC field. The Comas Solá balloon flight, first real test of the PWA experiment in the terrestrial atmosphere, confirmed the validity of the ionic conductivity measurements but raised the problem of a reliable interpretation of the DC field.

Dates and versions

insu-03611207 , version 1 (17-03-2022)

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Josè J. Lopez Moreno, G. J. Molina-Cuberos, R. Rodrigo, Michel Hamelin, K. Schwingenschuh. Polar ionic conductivity profile in fair weather conditions. Terrestrial test of the Huygens/Hasi-PWA instrument aboard the Comas Sola balloon. Journal of Atmospheric and Terrestrial Physics, 2001, 63 (18), pp.1959-1966. ⟨10.1016/S1364-6826(01)00068-2⟩. ⟨insu-03611207⟩
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