Development and evaluation of airborne microwave refractometer for studies on atmospheric tropical boundary layer radiorefractive index
Abstract. Observations of high-resolution data on radio refractivity were obtained by the airborne microwave refractometer over the Indian sub-continent (a tropical country) from 1971 to 1988. Detailed vertical and horizontal distributions of radio refractivity on a near-real-time basis in the atmospheric boundary layer were determined . Radiosonde observations cannot detect the thin refractivity gradients which characterize the propagation environment in this low-altitude region. This knowledge is required to design reliable and efficient communication systems for strategic, tactical and operational needs. However, the results demonstrate the layer structures and the variability of the boundary layer in time and space. The radio refractive effects on electromagnetic propagation and the future direction of radio refractivity fine-structure measurements are discussed.