To request Poker Flat AMISR (PFISR) or Resolute Bay North Face (RISR-N) operations, email PI michael.nicolls@sri.com (CC mary.mccready@sri.com) as early as possible. Include experiment purpose, scientific objectives, relevant operating details (dates, hours, optical or geophysical conditions, etc.), and collaborators. If more time is requested than the operating budget allows, these details will help us combine operating modes and share windows to satisfy as many users as possible.

 PLANNED PFISR OPERATIONS: 2007–present (pdf)
 PLANNED RISR-N OPERATIONS: 2009–present (pdf)

NOTE: Actual operations may vary from scheduled and will be posted as available.

JAN2010 PFISR featured in Space Weather Quarterly

RISR-N data; note F-region quiet-time structure

JULY2009 AMISR Student Workshop at SRI

JUN2009 PMSE data from World Day run

ACES2 rocket launch

JUL2008 AMISR Student Workshop at Millstone Hill

OCT2007 GRL features PFISR cover article

More rockets from Poker Flat! Two campaigns are being supported.

PFISR featured in Space Weather Quarterly (Vol. 7, Issue 1, 2010) "Editor's Choice." VIEW ARTICLE

PFISR and RISR-N operate for 10-day World Day (WD) run studying effects of stratospheric warming on the lower thermosphere and ionosphere. Unfortunately, RISRÝs generator failed on day 7. Analysis and repairs are underway.

PFSR and RISR-N participate in first optical campaign to use all high-latitude ISRs, coordinated by Ph.D. candidate Magnar Johnsen of U. Tromsø (currently at Boston U.). PFSR and RISR-N also operate for 6-day WD run to study temporal and latitudinal behavior of electron density changes, particularly near the plasmaspheric boundary layer.

PFISR and RISR-N operate for 10-day WD run to study equinoctal neutral wind reversal. PFISR continues to operate in low-duty cycle mode when not in use for other runs.

RISR-N (the north-looking AMISR face at Resolute, Canada) completes engineering testing and calibration, and is fully operational with 128 panels. Data show interesting F-region structure during very quiet times.

Five-day AMISR Student Workshop is held at SRI, attended by 21 students. Final day guest lecturers include Sixto Gonzales of Arecibo Observatory, and Michael Kelley and former AMISR workshop student Roger Varney, both of Cornell U.

PFISR participates in first World Day run to study PMSE.

Special issue of the J. Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics (Vol. 71, Issue 6-7) with initial results from PFISR is published, edited by Dr. Diego Janches (NWRA CoRA Div.). VIEW ARTICLE

PFISR supports ACES-2 and CASCADES-2 rocket campaigns in addition to numerous optical campaigns.

Five-day AMISR Student Workshop held at Millstone Hill, attended by 21 students. PFISR also participates in PARS workshop held in Alaska.

The 2nd AMISR Science Planning Workshop was held to highlight results from first year PFISR operations, provide incoherent scatter basics and AMISR access tutorials, and discuss plans for future Resolute Bay AMISR operations. VIEW WORKSHOP TUTORIALS

PFISR completes year-long International Polar Year (IPY) run. When not running for other experiments, PFISR has operated almost continuously since 01 March 2007 in a low-duty cycle mode. The resulting large dataset, combined with that from the year-long full-power EISCAT Svalbard radar and the biweekly 30 hr runs of the EISCAT Tromsø, Sondrestrom and Millstone Hill radars, provides an unprecedented volume of high-latitude measurements during the IPY.

Two special sessions on PFISR initial results at the Fall AGU, including 7 talks and 11 posters with PFISR data.

Geophysical Research Letters October 2007 issue features PFISR on the cover with an article demonstrating the volumetric imaging capability of the system.

REAL-TIME & ARCHIVAL OPTICS DATA from Poker Flat and other Geophysical Institute sites: http://optics.gi.alaska.edu/optics/

La Plata, Argentina, has been proposed as a destination for one of the AMISR faces. View the (low-res or high-res .mov) visualization of LaPlISR making conjugate measurements with the Arecibo ISR.


AMISR is a modular, mobile radar facility that will be used by scientists and students from around the world to conduct studies of the upper atmosphere and to observe space weather events.

SRI International, under a grant from the National Science Foundation, is leading a collaborative effort in the development of AMISR, whose novel modular configuration is designed to allow relative ease of relocation for studying upper atmospheric activity around the globe. Remote operation and electronic beam steering will allow researchers operate and position the radar beam instantaneously to accurately measure rapidly changing space weather events.

When completed, AMISR will consist of three separate radar faces, with each face comprised of 128 building block-like panels over a 30 x 30 meter roughly square surface. AMISR is being constructed in two stages: the first face in Poker Flat, Alaska, has been completed and is already being used for scientific investigations. The remaining two faces are under construction in Resolute Bay, Nunavut, Canada. Future AMISR locations will be determined by a scientific advisory panel. Since each face of AMISR functions independently, AMISR can be deployed in up to three separate locations at the same time.

For additional information about the AMISR project, see the SRI press release.

This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. ATM-0608577. Any opinions, findings and conclusions or recomendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation (NSF).

SRI International – Lead design and construction of the facility. Oversee operations and use during design verification tests.
Co-investigator institutions include MIT Millstone Hill, University of Alaska, University of Calgary, and University of Saskatchewan.
Sanmina-SCI – Manufacture of antenna element units, the basic building blocks of radar panels.
VECO Alaska – Oversee design and structural engineering of radar, including panels and support scaffolding.
  AMISR conceptual drawing with aurora borealis in background.
Incoherent scatter radar dish at Sondrestrom Research Facility.
128 kb (.jpg)
2.1 MB (.jpg)
Earth's magnetosphere/ionosphere response to the impact of a solar magnetic cloud. MORE >
The magnetic cloud impact described above also intensifies the large-scale voltage measured over the Earth's magnetic pole. MORE >

© 2007 SRI International 333 Ravenswood Avenue Menlo Park, CA 94025