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Published September 19, 2016 | Published
Book Section - Chapter Open

Capturing Complete Spatial Context in Satellite Observations of Greenhouse Gases


Scientific consensus from a 2015 pre-Decadal Survey workshop highlighted the essential need for a wide-swath (mapping) low earth orbit (LEO) instrument delivering carbon dioxide (CO_2), methane (CH_4), and carbon monoxide (CO) measurements with global coverage. OCO-2 pioneered space-based CO_2 remote sensing, but lacks the CH_4, CO and mapping capabilities required for an improved understanding of the global carbon cycle. The Carbon Balance Observatory (CARBO) advances key technologies to enable high-performance, cost-effective solutions for a space-based carbon-climate observing system. CARBO is a compact, modular, 15-30° field of view spectrometer that delivers high-precision CO_2, CH_4, CO and solar induced chlorophyll fluorescence (SIF) data with weekly global coverage from LEO. CARBO employs innovative immersion grating technologies to achieve diffraction-limited performance with OCO-like spatial (2x2 km^2) and spectral (λ/Δλ ≈ 20,000) resolution in a package that is >50% smaller, lighter and more cost-effective. CARBO delivers a 25- to 50-fold increase in spatial coverage compared to OCO-2 with no loss of detection sensitivity. Individual CARBO modules weigh < 20 kg, opening diverse new space-based platform opportunities.

Additional Information

© 2016 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Some of this work was supported by NASA ACT grant NNX12AC31G. A portion of this research was carried out at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under contract with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

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