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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » Hydrology and Remote Sensing Laboratory » Research » Research Project #426499

Research Project: Single Channel Soil Moisture Algorithm and Validation in the U.S.

Location: Hydrology and Remote Sensing Laboratory

Project Number: 8042-13610-029-72-R
Project Type: Reimbursable Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Apr 15, 2014
End Date: Mar 31, 2017

Passive microwave remote sensing of soil moisture has matured over the past decade as a result of the Advanced Scanning Microwave Radiometer (AMSR) program of Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA). This program has resulted in improved algorithms that have been supported by rigorous validation. Access to the products and the validation of their accuracy has been fundamental to their acceptance and usage, which in turn has resulted in contributions to science and applications. There is a need to continue algorithm development and validation throughout the project and to revisit some of the basic approaches in research algorithms that might lead to improvements as we learn more about the radiative transfer process. This project would contribute to these by providing an alternative soil moisture research algorithm and in situ soil moisture validation data from sites in the U.S. that complement those supported by JAXA. The goal is to continue to improve and validate the Single Channel Algorithm as a research algorithm.

Parametrization of vegetation in the Single Channel Algorithm will be updated based upon recent research and new ancillary data sets. Algorithm products will be monitored and validated throughout the project life. These studies will be based primarily on comparisons of algorithm and in situ observations of soil moisture. We will use all data sets available from JAXA in our analyses and contribute data from at least seven watershed sites within the U.S. to the data used to validate the JAXA standard soil moisture algorithm, as well as other research algorithms. Analysis of Global Change Observation Mission 1st Water (GCOM-W) Advanced Scanning Microwave Radiometer 2 (AMSR2) observations over land will contribute to establishing a longer term climate record of brightness temperature and soil moisture when combined with previous and future satellite missions developed by JAXA.