Date of Award

Spring 2022

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Degree Name

Master of Science in Engineering Physics

Department

College of Arts & Sciences

Committee Chair

Aroh Barjatya

First Committee Member

Dr. Robert Clayton

Second Committee Member

Dr. Charles Lee

Abstract

The recent miniaturization of embedded electronics and widespread availability of low-cost sensors, microcontrollers and transceivers has enabled development of sensor suites that can be used for high temporal and spatial resolution measurements of atmospheric parameters such as temperature, pressure, humidity, particulate counts, wind velocity and much more. This thesis presents the development of both airborne and ground based distributed atmospheric instrumentation suites. First, we present a low-cost radiosonde platform capable of simultaneous multipoint launches or high cadence back-to-back continuous launches. This radiosonde platform can do wind measurements on an approximately 60 m scale up to a minimum of 25 km. It is capable of simultaneous communication on the ISM band at ranges up to 100 km with multiple payloads. Second presented is a high-altitude balloon (HAB) instrumented platform capable of controlled slow descent. With open communication ports, this HAB bus can be used with any instrumentation an end user wants to include. Novel methods of enabling both extended flight and controlled descent are also presented. And lastly, we present a design of a ground based IOT air quality monitoring system. This system provides information about particulate matter, carbon dioxide, and volatile organic compound content present in a given area. Information is uploaded to an open source platform connected to a local network over WiFi and saved to files by a Python 3.8 based data logger. All software development for each of these systems was completed in C++ using the Arduino IDE and in MATLAB. Circuit and PCB design was done using Autodesk Eagle.

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