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Proceedings Paper

AMSU-B: a new tool for atmospheric research
Author(s): Roger W. Saunders; Stephen J. English; David C. Jones
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Paper Abstract

The U.K. Meteorological Office (UKMO) is providing to NOAA three flight models of the high frequency part of the Advanced Microwave Sounding Unit known as AMSU-B. The AMSU-B is a five channel microwave radiometer with channels centered at 89, 150, 183+/- 1, 183+/- 3 and 183+/- 7 GHz with a field of view of nominally 1.1 degree(s) (i.e. 15 km footprint at nadir). AMSU-B will fly on the NOAA KLM polar orbiters due to be launched in the next few years. All three AMSU-B flight models have undergone a comprehensive test and characterization program to measure the antenna pattern and spectral, radiometric and thermal properties of each instrument. The results from this test program have allowed a procedure for the in-orbit calibration of AMSU-B to be defined. In parallel with the development of the AMSU-B radiometer a program of aircraft radiometer measurements and model development has been carried out with the aim of improving our capability of predicting the radiative transfer through the atmosphere at AMSU-B frequencies. The aircraft radiometer has channels at 89 GHz and 157 GHz which are close to the corresponding window channels of AMSU-B and it can view both upwards and downwards. Measurements of clear transmission, sea surface emissivity and transmission through cloud liquid water have all been analyzed. Based on these measurements a forward radiative transfer model is being developed which will be used in the retrieval of temperature, humidity and cloud liquid water from AMSU.

Paper Details

Date Published: 21 December 1994
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 2313, Microwave Instrumentation and Satellite Photogrammetry for Remote Sensing of the Earth, (21 December 1994); doi: 10.1117/12.197338
Show Author Affiliations
Roger W. Saunders, U.K. Meteorological Office (United Kingdom)
Stephen J. English, U.K. Meteorological Office (United Kingdom)
David C. Jones, U.K. Meteorological Office (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2313:
Microwave Instrumentation and Satellite Photogrammetry for Remote Sensing of the Earth
Joan B. Lurie; Paolo Pampaloni; James C. Shiue, Editor(s)

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