The Stratosphere-Troposphere Analyses of Regional Transport (START-08) campaign to study the transport characteristics of the extratropical upper tropospheric and lower stratospheric (ExUTLS) was conducted April through June, 2008. The study incorporated data taken from instrumentation aboard the NSF-NCAR Gulfstream V, satellite imaging, and from various model simulations. START08 set the stage for more complex and comprehensive field studies of chemistry and microphysics currently in the planning stages.
The science focused on the characterization of the structure and major transport processes of the extratropical UTLS and on chemical distributions and relationships in that region. In situ measurements of meteorological parameters, trace species, and microphysical properties were used, in combination with model simulations of regional dynamics, to trace the history of the air found in this region and to better understand the transport boundary between the UT and LS.
Since transport processes dominate the chemical distributions and microphysical conditions in the UTLS, START08 will improve understanding chemistry and microphysics in this region by developing effective observational and modeling tools for characterizing major transport influences.