They say 10,000 hours makes an expert. If so, the TOPAZ crew is well on their way, with more than 500 hours of ozone lidar data acquired with nearly 2 days left to go in the campaign. To put that in perspective, that is more than 500 hours with two people (Chris and Raul or… Read More

Lately, a full day of TOPAZ run has meant an average of 12 to 15 hours a day. We try to stretch, stand up when we can and enjoy what the outsides of the North Las Vegas Airport has to offer: the neighbors contractors junkyard, a palm tree, a bit of wildlife, a part of… Read More

The TOPAZ lidar was originally developed to be airborne, but has been truck-based since 2012. It is based on a compact solid-state laser system originally developed by NASA and incorporates state-of-the-art technologies that makes it compact and lightweight with low power consumption. On the picture below, you can see a black box that contains the… Read More

We don’t see very much wildlife in our little compound here at the North Las Vegas Airport-unless you count the wild life happening about 5 miles to the south of us on the Strip, or of course, Fast Elvis, who has  been lying low in the recent heat. Before it got so hot, we liked… Read More

I have fond memories of Angel Peak (8780 ft) from the first LVOS campaign in 2013 when TOPAZ was deployed there and we stayed only 5 miles away at the Mt. Charleston Resort. We almost never had to go down into the valley except to buy groceries or fly in and out of Las Vegas. … Read More

Greetings from Angel Peak!  The CSD Mobile Lab has been running from this mountaintop location since the beginning of the project. It’s typically 20-30 degrees cooler up here, which provides a nice escape from the 110°+ heat of Las Vegas!  The scenery isn’t too bad either.  I’ve named this rock along the road Sam the… Read More

One of the fun things about being stationed at an airport is that you get to see a lot of interesting aircraft. Of course, the most interesting of all is the Scientific Aviation Mooney (N2132X) seen here coming back to the North Las Vegas Airport from a 6-h IOP flight last week. This is our… Read More

Today we celebrate half of the campaign and already a lot has been done: more than 200 hours of TOPAZ measurements and a record of 38 hours straight, 14 ozonesondes, 2 IOPs and stratospheric intrusions, Mexican fires, Asian transport …. But we are still waiting for Andy to check out the pool !… Read More

The hours can get long in the back of the TOPAZ truck, particularly when it’s 102°F in the shade and you really don’t want to be out there with Fast Elvis. Most of that time is spent productively: looking at the data, pondering the forecasts, blogging, snacking, etc., but sometimes you just need to play… Read More

The deserts of the Southwest abound with wildlife, but much of it spends the day looking for a cool place to hang out. We all know there is no place cooler than the TOPAZ truck, and our new mascot is a Great Basin Whiptail who finds his daily comfort in the shade beneath us. He’s… Read More