Ted Thornhill update: at 12: 19 on November 30, 2011, it looks like a scene in Star Wars, but when a powerful green laser is launched from Palma to Tenerife, it's only for peaceful purposes-measuring greenhouse gases.
The technical term for this process is "infrared differential absorption spectra", which basically means that scientists measure them by studying how gases such as carbon dioxide and methane interfere with infrared beams, which are guided by green lasers.
Researchers from the Wegener center at the University of Glaz in Austria and the University of York and Manchester spent two weeks carrying out the experiment, which will eventually run between orbiting satellites.
Rolling down the center of VIDEOGottfried Kirchengast Wegener said: "Activity is the next step in achieving infrared
Laser star mask observations from space
"We are delighted that this international pioneer
The demonstration of islands measuring carbon dioxide and methane was successful.
"The infrared beam is not visible to the naked eye, but the green guided laser is made for the spectacular scene, and atmospheric turbulence is also recorded.
The laser was launched from a transmitter in La Palma and reached the European Space Agency 90 miles (ESA)
Optical Ground Station in Tenerife.
ESA explained that when the experiment is repeated at different heights, it will establish a "vertical profile" from a high altitude of more than 12 miles to a lower stratosphere ", with the rise and fall of the satellite on Earth.
Armin Löscher of ESA's future mission division added: "coordination is a challenging experiment, but working with an active team of renowned scientists and young scholars is a real one