The FAAM is a large atmospheric research BAE-146 aircraft, run jointly by the NERC and the UK Met Office. It has been in operation since March 2004 and is at the scientists' disposal through a scheme of project selection.
Data collected by this aircraft is stored in the FAAM data archive and includes "core" data, provided by the FAAM as a support to all flight campaigns, and "non-core" data, the nature of which depends on the scientific goal of the campaign.
FAAM instruments provide four types of data:
- parameters required for aircraft navigation;
- cloud physics;
- chemical composition.
The data are accompanied by extensive metadata, including flight logs. The FAAM apparatus includes a number of core instruments permanently onboard and operated by FAAM staff members, and a variety of other instruments, grouped into chemistry kit and cloud physics kit, that can be fitted onto the aircraft on demand.
FAAM is also a member of the EUropean Facility for Airborne Research (EUFAR) fleet of research aircraft.
Apart from some exceptions, access to processed core data is public but requires an online application (application is granted automatically after agreement with the FAAM Conditions of Use). Access to non-core data is ruled by the relevant protocols in force for each project.