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Proceedings Paper • Open Access

Remote sensing of the global environment with satellite scatterometry
Author(s): Son V. Nghiem; Gregory Neumann

Paper Abstract

This paper presents an overview of satellite scatterometry for remote sensing of the global environment from the tropics to polar regions. Results were derived from microwave backscatter data acquired by the NASA SeaWinds scatterometer aboard the QuikSCAT (QSCAT) satellite. QSCAT observed two successive super cyclones that hit the Orissa coastal region of India, affecting 15 million people in 1999. The extent of soil moisture change was delineated after Cyclone Nargis made landfall in Myanmar in May 2008. QSCAT detected excessive rainwater followed by a severe drought leading to widespread wildfires in California, U.S., in 2007. QSCAT tracked vegetation change in an extreme drought in Nairobi, Kenya, affecting 3 million people in 2000. QSCAT monitored snowmelt patterns over the Northern Hemisphere, which showed poleward oscillations of melt bands. QSCAT revealed a record reduction in Arctic perennial sea ice in this decade and a further drastic decline of perennial ice in 2008. At 1-km posting, QSCAT identified urban and suburban areas where backscatter was shown to correlate with population density. QSCAT delineated wind shadow areas near small islands in the Asia-Pacific region. These results demonstrate that satellite scatterometer can provide numerous crucial data products to the Global Earth Observation System of Systems.

Paper Details

Date Published: 8 December 2008
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 7154, Microwave Remote Sensing of the Atmosphere and Environment VI, 715402 (8 December 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.804462
Show Author Affiliations
Son V. Nghiem, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Gregory Neumann, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7154:
Microwave Remote Sensing of the Atmosphere and Environment VI
Azita Valinia; Peter H. Hildebrand; Seiho Uratsuka, Editor(s)

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