MADCAT- Molecular Aerosol Detector for Clear Air Turbulence
MADCAT is an initiative to devise an instrument to measure
clear air turbulence ahead of an aircraft. This on-board sensor will be designed to provide ample warning time (greater
than one minute) for a pilot to avoid turbulent air even in regions of little or no aerosols.
The number of turbulence-related
incidents and the injuries to passengers has created significant concern
and interest in this area over the past several years.
According to the FAA, turbulence
encounters are the leading cause of injury in nonfatal accidents, and,
since 1981, over one-fifth of air carrier accidents have been linked
Since MADCAT utilizes both molecular (Rayleigh) and aerosol (Mie) scattering,
detection of clear air turbulence in regions containing little or no
aerosols is possible. MADCAT will be based on the Molecular
Optical Air Data System (MOADS), which is an instrument currently
under development that measures air data products ahead of an aircraft.