Data generated during the 2018 LAPSE-RATE campaign: An introduction and overview

Gijs De Boer, Adam Houston, Jamey Jacob, Phillip B. Chilson, Suzanne W. Smith, Brian Argrow, Dale Lawrence, Jack Elston, David Brus, Osku Kemppinen, Petra Klein, Julie K. Lundquist, Sean Waugh, Sean C.C. Bailey, Amy Frazier, Michael P. Sama, Christopher Crick, David Schmale, James Pinto, Elizabeth A. Pillar-LittleVictoria Natalie, Anders Jensen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Unmanned aircraft systems (UASs) offer innovative capabilities for providing new perspectives on the atmosphere, and therefore atmospheric scientists are rapidly expanding their use, particularly for studying the planetary boundary layer. In support of this expansion, from 14 to 20 July 2018 the International Society for Atmospheric Research using Remotely piloted Aircraft (ISARRA) hosted a community flight week, dubbed the Lower Atmospheric Profiling Studies at Elevation - a Remotely-piloted Aircraft Team Experiment (LAPSE-RATE; de Boer et al., 2020a). This field campaign spanned a 1-week deployment to Colorado's San Luis Valley, involving over 100 students, scientists, engineers, pilots, and outreach coordinators. These groups conducted intensive field operations using unmanned aircraft and ground-based assets to develop comprehensive datasets spanning a variety of scientific objectives, including a total of nearly 1300 research flights totaling over 250 flight hours. This article introduces this campaign and lays the groundwork for a special issue on the LAPSE-RATE project. The remainder of the special issue provides detailed overviews of the datasets collected and the platforms used to collect them. All of the datasets covered by this special issue have been uploaded to a LAPSE-RATE community set up at the Zenodo data archive (, last access: 3 December 2020).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3357-3366
Number of pages10
JournalEarth System Science Data
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 11 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgements. LAPSE-RATE was made possible by the active participation of over 100 people. Limited financial support, specifically for participant travel, was provided by the US National Science Foundation (NSF; AGS 1807199) and the US Department of Energy (DE-SC0018985). Partial support was also provided by the US National Science Foundation through award no. 1539070, Collaboration Leading Operational UAS Development for Meteorology and Atmospheric Physics (CLOUDMAP), and award no. CBET-1351411. Further, this work was authored in part by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, operated by Alliance for Sustainable Energy, LLC, for the US Department of Energy (DOE) under contract no. DE-AC36-08GO28308.

Funding Information:
Financial support. This research has been supported by the National Science Foundation (grant nos. AGS 1807199, 1539070, and CBET-1351411) and the US Department of Energy (grant nos. DESC0018985 and DE-AC36-08GO28308).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 BMJ Publishing Group. All rights reserved.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (all)


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