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Mentors: R. Haseneder-Lind, J. Schween.
The Large Aperture Scintillometer (LAS) is a instrument designed for measuring the path-averaged structure parameter of the refractive index of air (Cn^2) over horizontal path lengths from 250m to 4,5km. Structure parameter measurements obtained with the LAS and standart meteorological observations (air temperature, wind speed and air pressure) can be used to derive the surface sensible heat flux (H).
The LAS optically measure intensity fluctuations (known as scintillations) using a transmitter and receiver horizontally separated by several kilometers. The scintillations seen by the instrument can be expressed as the structure parameter of the refractive index of air(Cn^2). The light source of the LAS transmitter operates at a near-infrared wavelength of 880nm. At this wavelength the observed scintillations are primarily caused by turbulent temperature fluctuations. Therefore Cn^2 measurements obtained with the LAS can be related the sensible heat flux.