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Proceedings Paper

SMOS: a satellite mission to measure ocean surface salinity
Author(s): Jordi Font; Yann H. Kerr; Meric A. Srokosz; Jacqueline Etcheto; Gary S. E. Lagerloef; Adriano Camps; Philippe Waldteufel
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Paper Abstract

The ESA's SMOS (Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity) Earth Explorer Opportunity Mission will be launched by 2005. Its baseline payload is a microwave L-band (21 cm, 1.4 GHz) 2D interferometric radiometer, Y shaped, with three arms 4.5 m long. This frequency allows the measurement of brightness temperature (Tb) under the best conditions to retrieve soil moisture and sea surface salinity (SSS). Unlike other oceanographic variables, until now it has not been possible to measure salinity from space. However, large ocean areas lack significant salinity measurements. The 2D interferometer will measure Tb at large and different incidence angles, for two polarizations. It is possible to obtain SSS from L-band passive microwave measurements if the other factors influencing Tb (SST, surface roughness, foam, sun glint, rain, ionospheric effects and galactic/cosmic background radiation) can be accounted for. Since the radiometric sensitivity is low, SSS cannot be recovered to the required accuracy from a single measurement as the error is about 1-2 psu. If the errors contributing to the uncertainty in Tb are random, averaging the independent data and views along the track, and considering a 200 km square, allow the error to be reduced to 0.1-0.2 pus, assuming all ancillary errors are budgeted.

Paper Details

Date Published: 31 January 2001
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 4167, Atmospheric Propagation, Adaptive Systems, and Laser Radar Technology for Remote Sensing, (31 January 2001); doi: 10.1117/12.413825
Show Author Affiliations
Jordi Font, Institut de Ciencies del Mar/CSIC (Spain)
Yann H. Kerr, Ctr. d'Etudes Spatiales de la Biosphere (France)
Meric A. Srokosz, Southampton Oceanography Ctr. (United Kingdom)
Jacqueline Etcheto, Univ. Pierre et Marie Curie (France)
Gary S. E. Lagerloef, Earth and Space Research (United States)
Adriano Camps, Univ. Politecnica de Catalunya (Spain)
Philippe Waldteufel, Institut Pierre Simon Laplace (France)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4167:
Atmospheric Propagation, Adaptive Systems, and Laser Radar Technology for Remote Sensing
John D. Gonglewski; Gary W. Kamerman; Anton Kohnle; Ulrich Schreiber; Christian Werner, Editor(s)

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