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IceBridge - Aircraft: NASA P-3B Airborne Laboratory

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NASA P-3B Airborne Laboratory

NASA's P3B prepares for takeoff from the Wallops Flight Facility. › View larger
NASA's P-3B prepares to depart from the NASA Wallops Flight Facility in Wallops, Virginia. Credit: NASA

The P-3B aircraft is ideally suited for low altitude heavy lift airborne science missions. The NASA P-3B has a long history of supporting cryosphere studies, and due to the long range of the aircraft, it is able to support ice sheet studies in both the Arctic and Antarctica polar regions.

NASA's P-3B is a four-engine turboprop, capable of long duration flights of 8-12 hours and is based out of NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Wallops Island, VA. It will support the same suite of IceBridge instruments also flown in the IceBridge 2009-2012 Arctic and Antarctic campaigns, with exception of the Land, Vegetation, and Ice Sensor (LVIS), which in Arctic 2012 campaign flew on the NASA's new Falcon aircraft.

The P-3B last flew with IceBridge on their 2012 Arctic campaign, during which the aircraft made flights out of both Kangerlussuaq and Thule, Greenland and will once again support IceBridge for the Arctic 2013 campaign.


Graphic of P-3B with location of science instrument sensors indicated. › View larger
Graphic of P-3B with location for science instrument sensors indicated. Credit: Tim Barker


› P-3B Fact Sheet

Page Last Updated: March 14th, 2014
Page Editor: Holly Zell