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South Africa's first mobile LIDAR (LIght Detection And Ranging) system is being developed at the National Laser Centre (NLC) of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) in Pretoria (25?45'S; 28?17'E). The system is designed primarily for remote sensing of the atmosphere. At present, the system is being optimised for measuring vertical atmospheric backscatter profiles of aerosols and clouds. In this paper, the authors describe the complete LIDAR system, including laser transmission, telescope configuration, data acquisition, data archival and post-processing.
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