Pacific Northwest National Laboratory scientists now have the capability to document atmospheric and climate change at locations nearly anywhere in the world, thanks to a new mobile atmospheric monitoring system developed at the Laboratory. The Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Atmospheric Remote Sensing Laboratory, called PARSL, is a complete climate-measuring system that can be taken to nearly any site quickly and easily. Scientists can conduct research wherever the need exists by simply loading the equipment on a flatbed trailer or placing it in a cargo container for ocean travel.
PARSL also allows scientists immediate access to newly gathered information. Data can be downloaded directly onto a compact disc or web site where it can be made available to scientists around the world. The PARSL suite of instruments will allow researchers to closely focus on key elements that contribute to climate change. In particular, scientists are interested in the amount of solar energy reaching the earth's surface and the atmospheric conditions that influence it.
The Department of Energy's Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time.