Atmospheric Radiation Measurement Climate Research Facility US Department of Energy

sonde > Balloon-Borne Sounding SystemInstrument Type(s) > Baseline • Evaluation • External • Guest

The balloon-borne sounding system (SONDE) provides in situ measurements (vertical profiles) of both the thermodynamic state of the atmosphere, and the wind speed and direction.

Sonde operations can provide important constraints for model simulations if used during field campaigns where multiple stations are operated around a central location with baseline measurements, such as a mobile facility. When deployed, sondes are launched at scheduled intervals.


In early June 2014, a radiosonde intercomparison trial was undertaken at the SGP Central Facility site with the goal of quantifying the relative performance of the RS92-SGP/MW31 and RS41-SG/MW41 radiosondes/systems. The June time period at SGP represents a springtime mid-latitude convective environment where the extensive remote sensing observations at the SGP site were used to further quantify the environment during the intercomparison. Over the course of five days (3 -8 June) a total of 20 balloon launches were completed with efforts to sample the entire diurnal cycle and a variety of cloud conditions.


  • Fixed
  • AMF1
  • AMF2
  • AMF3

Data Details

Developed By Michael Jensen | Tami Toto
Contact Michael Jensen
Resource(s) Data Directory
Data format netcdf
Site SGP
Content time range 1 July 1993 - 4 February 2023
Attribute accuracy No formal attribute accuracy tests were conducted
Positional accuracy No formal positional accuracy tests were conducted
Data Consistency and Completeness Data set is considered complete for the information presented, as described in the abstract.Users are advised to read the rest of the metadata record carefully for addtional details.
Access Restriction No access constraints are associated with this data.
Use Restriction No use constraints are associated with this data.
File naming convention Standard ARM naming convention
Directory Organization MW31 and MW41 distinguish the two types of radiosondes in the comparison


Hu X, J Park, T Supinie, N Snook, M Xue, K Brewster, J Brotzge, and J Carley. 2023. "Diagnosing Near-Surface Model Errors with Candidate Physics Parameterization Schemes for the Multiphysics Rapid Refresh Forecast System (RRFS) Ensemble during Winter over the Northeastern United States and Southern Great Plains." Monthly Weather Review, 151(1), 10.1175/MWR-D-22-0085.1.

O’Donnell S, A Akherati, Y He, A Hodshire, J Shilling, C Kuang, J Fast, F Mei, Siegfried Schobesberger7, J Thornton, J Smith, S Jathar, and J Pierce. 2023. "Look Up: Probing the Vertical Profile of New Particle Formation and Growth in the Planetary Boundary Layer with Models and Observations." Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 128(3), e2022JD037525, 10.1029/2022JD037525.


Dorsey KS. 2022. Cloud And Precipitation Experiment at Kennaook. Ed. by Michelle E Prichard, ARM user facility. DOE/SC-ARM-22-006. 10.2172/1902732.

Zhou A, SE Giangrande, D Wang, and M Jensen. 2022. Convective Parameters Derived from Radiosonde Data (SONDEPARAM) Value-Added Product Report. Ed. by Robert Stafford, ARM user facility. DOE/SC-ARM-TR-284. 10.2172/1909985.

Williams I and S Qiu. 2022. "Long‐term observations of turbulence vertical velocity spectra in a convective mixed layer: Dependence on land‐surface forcing in the U.S. Southern Great Plains." Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 127(24), e2022JD037137, 10.1029/2022JD037137.

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