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Atmospheric Laboratory of Applications and Science (ATLAS-1)

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Status: Completed
Mission Category: Other
Launch Date: March 24, 1992

The first of the Atmospheric Laboratory of Applications and Science (ATLAS) series of Shuttle flights, ATLAS-1, was an important part of the long-term, coordinated research that made up NASA’s Mission to Planet Earth. Two ATLAS-1 instruments, ACR and SUSIM, had direct counterparts aboard UARS, while other instruments aboard each mission were closely related. Repeated flights of the ATLAS instruments, which were carefully calibrated before and after each flight, allowed for long-term calibration of UARS instruments.

This was the first of a series studying the Earth’s atmosphere and the Sun’s influence upon it over an entire 11-year solar cycle. ATLAS-1 experiments focused on four scientific disciplines: atmospheric science, solar science, space plasma physics and astronomy. By making simultaneous solar and atmospheric measurements on a global scale, scientists hoped to unravel the complicated web of man’s impact on the environment.

Key Atmospheric Laboratory of Applications and Science Facts

Mission/Portal Page:
Instruments: ATMOS (Atmospheric Trace Molecule Spectroscopy)
MAS (Millimeter-Wave Atmospheric Sounder)
SSBUV (Shuttle Solar Backscatter Ultraviolet)
SUSIM (Solar Ultraviolet Spectral Irradiance Monitor)

Relevant Science Focus Areas:

  • Atmospheric Composition
  • Climate Variability and Change

Relevant Science Questions:

  • How is the global Earth system changing?