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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Soil Moisture Validation in the U.S. and a Land Temperature Product

Location: Hydrology and Remote Sensing Laboratory

2012 Annual Report


1a.Objectives (from AD-416):
The goal of this proposal is to provide the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency with validated soil moisture and land surface temperature retrieval algorithms for the Global Climate Observing Mission-Water (GCOM-W) satellite system that will be launched in 2012. GCOM-W will provide continuity and improvements to the previous generation of satellite sensors and algorithms. The soil moisture product is currently used in several agricultural hydrology and climate applications and the new land surface temperature product will expand these.


1b.Approach (from AD-416):
The specific contributions that this project would make include providing:.
1)an alternative soil moisture research algorithm and a re-evaluation of the algorithm in light of new vegetation products and AMSR-2 channels,.
2)soil moisture validation data from U.S. sites, and.
3)an algorithm for retrieving a new product-global land surface temperature. The soil moisture algorithm is well-established and only minor modifications for the changes in the instrument are planned. Validation will consist of assembling, processing, and analyzing in situ observations of soil moisture from sites in the U.S. and participating in algorithm inter-comparisons conducted by the sponsor. The land surface temperature product will be based on modifying prototype algorithms developed for other satellite sensors and demonstrating the accuracy and reliability using in situ and model estimates. These products will be used directly in agricultural hydrology and will support weather and climate forecast modeling.


3.Progress Report:

ARS cooperators are implementing an alternative soil moisture retrieval algorithm and a new land surface temperature algorithm for the new Advanced Scanning Microwave Radiometer 2 (AMSR2), launched by the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) in May 2012. Data products from these satellites and algorithms are being implemented into operational forecast and assessment techniques that will benefit agricultural hydrology and crop yield prediction.


Last Modified: 11/23/2014
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