NASA SBIR 02-1 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER:02- E1.03-8410 (For NASA Use Only - Chron: 023589 )
SUBTOPIC TITLE: In Situ Terrestrial Sensors
PROPOSAL TITLE: Microwave Rain Gauge

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Center for Remote Sensing Inc
11350 Random Hills Rd. Suite 710
Fairfax , VA   22030 - 6044
(703 ) 385 - 7717

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Suman Ganguly
11350 Random Hills Rd. Suite 710
Fairfax , VA   22030 - 6044
(703 ) 385 - 7717

This proposal describes a plan for the Design and Development of line of sight area averaged rain measurements using microwave backscatter techniques. The line averaged (and area covered) could be made variable, from as low as 100m to several km. The individual units can thus be used for both local measurements as well as for extending the observation over rain-cells. The techniques might be extended using multi-frequency and other techniques to obtain independent estimates of drop size distribution.
Both microwave attenuation and phase-shift are potential candidates for measuring rain rates. Microwave attenuation increases with frequency up to 100 GHz. The choice of appropriate frequencies is important, and optimization may become necessary in terms of available technology, cost and accuracies. The proposed effort describes a plan to develop a versatile instrument for measuring backscattered attenuation and phase at several frequencies. Experiments performed using the instrument will allow us to infer the optimum system parameters during Phase II.
Such a system will be valuable for earth communities, scientific research, global environment, agriculture and forestry among others. It would be valuable for NASA in estimating the ground truth and calibration and for comparison with the TRMM Rain Radar.

The high fidelity, multi-frequency, multi-parameter sensor will be an advanced scientific instrument and will be used for hydrologic, meteorlogic, agricultural, environmental, and various other applications with societal implications. The technology will also be used to measure moisture content in food-grain and for other agricultural and industrial applications.
The second product will be a modified version of the rain sensor, optimized for size, cost and portability. This product will find numerous applications throughout the world for meteorological, and hydrological monitoring.

There are several products resulting from the proposed effort. The first product is the high fidelity, multi frequency, multi parameter, and portable rain gauge specifically developed for rain and snow research. This instrument with superior performance and quality will be used by the NASA GSFC rain measurement facility at Wallops Island. Accurate measurements of rain and snowfall will be valuable for predicting the size of storm events, maximum precipitation, and the timing of run-off; the measurements will also be useful to power utilities for estimating drainage and power delivery variables (such as loading on transmission lines, etc.)

Form Printed on 09-05-02 10:10