Environmental Research Station Schneefernerhaus

The field measurement laboratory is a facility operated by MPI DS at the research station Schneefernerhaus near the peak of Zugspitze mountain at an altitude of 2650 m. Location of the laboratory provides easy access to the two topmost outside platforms of the station, which are best suited for study of atmospheric turbulence and cloud dynamics. On the top platform, we have installed a mast with a set of 3D sonic anemometers to conduct long-term year-round measurements of the wind and turbulence conditions at the UFS. Also situated on the top platform is a Lagrangian particle tracking apparatus dubbed the “Seesaw”, consisting of a 6 m-long set of rails along which a vibrationdamped box housing a set of high-speed cameras that can be driven at speeds of up to 7.5 m/s by two electromagnetic motors. Precise control of the translation velocity and tilt of the rail with respect to the horizontal make it possible to match the west-east and vertical components of the mean flow and follow cloud particles over time intervals longer than those achievable with a stationary setup. Illumination is provided by a 300 W green laser housed in the laboratory. A dual phase-Doppler interferometry probe allows measurement of cloud droplet size distribution and individual velocities. The set of tools and equipment stored at the laboratory, together with the in-house machine shop, allows rapid development of new field experiments.

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