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The spatial distribution of salinity in the Pearl River Estuary in China from space
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Paper Abstract

Sea surface salinity of ocean waters has been obtained from L-band microwave radiometer on satellite, such SMOS, Aquarius and SMAP. It provides a new technology and way to observe the salinity over large region from space. However, it is still difficult to get the sea surface salinity of the coastal waters due to that the effect on satellite-observed microwave radiance of radio frequency interference over near-shore regions. Fortunately, the colored dissolved organic matter (CDOM) has conservative or semi-conservative property in the freshwater areas of coastal rivers and it has a good linear correlation between the absorption coefficient of CDOM and salinity. Based on those, a conservative mixing relationship between the fresh water from the Pearl River and the sea water from the South China Sea are established and the distribution of sea surface salinity from MODIS-retrieved absorption coefficient of CDOM (aCDOM) at 355nm wavelength in this study. The linear relationship between salinity and aCDOM at 355 nm under conservative mixing conditions can be established from the in-situ observed salinity and MODIS-retrieved aCDOM at 355 nm at the central water mass in the Pearl River Estuary and the northern basin region of South China Sea. By comparing daily observed MODIS-retrieved sea surface salinity with the in-site observed salinity, it shows that the salinity retrieved from satellite-based aCDOM has good agreement with observations, and it can better capture the location of low salinity fresh water in the Pearl River. For the summer averaged satellite-based salinity from 2002 to 2018, sea surface salinity are gradually increases from the vertical coastline to the sea in the Pearl River Estuary region. The salinity in coastal region is low by the effect of the Pearl River diluted water, and the salinity in offshore region is high. On average, the distribution of salinity shows that the diffusion of fresh water from the Pearl River generally spread along the coastline to the east and west in summer, while the runoff on the westward is larger and on the eastward it is affected by some flushing water of other rivers. In the future, MODIS-retrieved salinity can be as a supplement to salinity inversion of Microwave radiometer in the coastal region.

Paper Details

Date Published: 14 October 2019
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 11150, Remote Sensing of the Ocean, Sea Ice, Coastal Waters, and Large Water Regions 2019, 1115016 (14 October 2019); doi: 10.1117/12.2532373
Show Author Affiliations
Zengzhou Hao, The Second Institute of Oceanography (China)
Qianguang Tu, Zhejiang Univ. of Water Resources and Electric Power (China)
Haiqing Huang, The Second Institute of Oceanography (China)
Difeng Wang, The Second Institute of Oceanography (China)
Yan Bai, The Second Institute of Oceanography (China)
Zhihua Mao, The Second Institute of Oceanography (China)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 11150:
Remote Sensing of the Ocean, Sea Ice, Coastal Waters, and Large Water Regions 2019
Charles R. Bostater Jr.; Xavier Neyt; Françoise Viallefont-Robinet, Editor(s)

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