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Infrared Cloud Imager (ICI)

The All-Sky Infrared Cloud Imager (ICI) autonomously detects and characterizes clouds over the full sky using a calibrated long-wave infrared (LWIR) thermal imaging camera providing real-time cloud data products. The ICI produces consistent cloud products day and night unlike visible band systems. The calibrated camera and proprietary data processing can detect thin clouds and in some cases cloud precursors, moist air masses.

Instruments have seen operation in the high mountain environment at the Haleakala Observatory in HI, humid environments at an ARM site in Oklahoma and outside of Boston, MA, freezing weather near our home office in Montana, and the hot California desert.

The user-friendly system consists of an environmentally stabilized Camera Enclosure mounted outdoors and connected to a Power Enclosure mounted in a climate-controlled environment. An automated hatch system provides protection for the imager’s lens during rain, snow, and high winds. An integrated weather station connects to the Camera Enclosure and collects atmospheric wind velocity, temperature, humidity, and pressure data. In addition, the system provides real-time atmospheric precipitable water vapor (PWV) observations that are derived using an integrated Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) receiver.

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