The Great Lakes Fleet Experiment was part of a weather safety initiative sponsored by NASA called Tropospheric Airborne Meteorological Data Report, or TAMDAR, whose focus was to test an inexpensive instrument that would measure meteorological variables. Sixty-four Saab 340s were equipped with TAMDAR devices. TAMDAR flights began Sept. 21, 2004, and continued through November 2005.
Installed on Mesaba Airlines' fleet of Saab 340 turbo-props, the TAMDAR instrument features a tiny sensor designed to gather weather information.
Mesaba Airlines' weekly commuter flights. With TAMDAR on board these flights, the number of weather soundings in the lower atmosphere increased from approximately 140 soundings to more than 800 a week.