Climate Processes Research Group

Large-scale dynamics, modeling, cycles of water and carbon, stable isotopes

HAVAIKI 2008: Field campaign

HAVAIKI_logoHAVAIKI: 8-28 October, 2008

HAwaii VApor Isotope Knowledge Intercomparison

"For us there is only one name," the old man insisted in a burst of rhetoric. "Havaiki of the manifold riches, Havaiki of the brave canoes, Havaiki of strong gods, and courageous men and beautiful women, Havaiki of the dreams that led across the endless oceans, Havaiki that has lived in our hearts for forty and fifty and sixty generations. This is the island of HAVAIKI!"

From James Michener's classic novel Hawaii
(Required reading for all investigators before  October 2008)

Latest NEWS

Now online:  HAVAIKI 2008 Wiki, which includes a HAVAIKI planning calendar.

TES overpasses (~2 am, 2pm local) will be:

        2008/10/11 12:21:11 UTC Descending
        2008/10/20 00:04:18 UTC Ascending
        2008/10/21 23:52:08 UTC Ascending
        2008/10/27 12:21:28 UTC Descending

What is the K in HAVAIKI? Kafkaesque, kludge, kooky, keynote, ...

What is HAVAIKI?

HAVAIKI is a field experiment  to make measurements of water vapor isotopologues at the NOAA observatory at Mauna Loa, Hawaii. The observations span about three weeks in October 2008, and use three different laser-based sensors and two different satellites, which will be validated against traditional mass spectrometry techniques applied to samples collected on site using vacuum flasks and cryogenic trapping.  The goal of this study is to compare the different measurement techniques (traditional mass spectrometry, commercially available ground-based spectroscopic water vapor analyzers, and satellite-based spectroscopy) in order to assess the fidelity of these new measurement technologies and to provide new data on the processes that control the humidity of the subtropical Pacific. 

Science objectives

  1. Evaluate surface-based water vapor analyzers for climate applications. 
  2. Perform a validation of remotely sensed isotope concentrations
  3. Evaluate which mechanisms control  mid-troposphere water vapor in the subtropics

Experiment team


David Noone, Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, University of Colorado
Joe Galewsky, Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, University of New Mexico
Zach Sharp, Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, University of New Mexico

Contributing participants

John Worden, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA
Lance Christensen, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA
Doug Baer, Los Gatos Research Inc., Mountain View, CA
Eric Crossin, Picarro, Sunnyvale, CA
Aaron van Pelt, Picarro, Sunnyvale, CA
Cathy Clerbaux, Service d’Aéronomie, CNRS, IPSL, Paris, France
Pierre Coheur, Service de Chimie Quantique et Photophysique, Universite Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium


Details forthcoming

Dolphin Bay Hotel, Hilo, HI.

Data and results

Calibrated (version 1 calibration):
Picarro (15 second data): get data via http
Los Gatos (10 second data): get data via http
Raw flask and trpa data: coming soon...
Please check with David ( on the use of these data. There are some known issues in some aspects of calibration and the time stamps.

Instrument Type Measurement Frequency
Flask Air/vapor, small volume isotope mass spectrometer analysis HDO 2-6 per day, MLO plus 2 sites lower altitude
Cryogenic Trapped vapor, traditional isotope mass spectrometer analysis HDO, H218O 2-6 per day, MLO
Los Gatos Water Vapor Analyzer ICOS, CRDS HDO, H218O Continuous (nominally 5 minute averages)
Picarro Water Vapor Analyzer CRDS (proprietary laser stabilization technology) HDO, H218O Continuous (nominally 5 minute averages)
JPL TWI/ALIAS-2 CRDS, variable configuration HDO, H218O Continuous (nominally 5 minute averages)
NASA TES Satellite infrared emission spectrometer Temperature, H2O, HDO (possibly H218O) 2am and 2pm , 4 instances at high resolution, plus lower resolution every 2 days
ESA/CNRS IASI Satellite infrared emission spectrometer Temperature, H2O, HDO (possibly H218O) 9:30am and 9:30 pm every day
NOAA MLO station observations meteorological Continuous, real time archived publicly

Hilo isotopes in precipitation data from IAEA ISOHIS (GNIP) database.

TES times series plot for observations with 50km of Mauna Loa.
TES Preliminary transect data over Mauna Loa.

John's preliminary transect.



This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 0840129.