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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Assessment of Aquarius/SAC-D Soil Moisture and Land Surface Temperature Using SMOS

item Jackson, Thomas
item Bindlish, R
item Holmes, Thomas
item Cosh, Michael
item Zhao, T
item O'neill, P

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/15/2010
Publication Date: 7/19/2010
Citation: Jackson, T.J., Bindlish, R., Holmes, T.R., Cosh, M.H., Zhao, T., O'Neill, P. 2010. Assessment of Aquarius/SAC-D soil moisture and land surface temperature using SMOS [abstract]. 6th Aquarius/SAC-D Science Workshop. 2010 CDROM.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Our objective is to exploit the large amount of land observations and extend the impact of Aquarius to land applications. The L-band observations over land present an unprecedented opportunity to provide a critical hydrologic parameter, land surface soil moisture. This research will expand the impact of the Aquarius mission to a broader scientific community, explore new algorithm approaches that exploit the active-passive observations, and contribute to the design and implementation of future satellite-based soil moisture missions. The first stage of our research focuses on the radiometer data because of the extensive heritage that this type of observation has in soil moisture applications. Building on previous satellite-based soil moisture research, we are implementing two different approaches to soil moisture retrieval. Both algorithms can take advantage of a unique component of Aquarius/SAC-D, the availability of a 36.5 GHz radiometer (MWR) to provide information on land surface temperature (LST). In addition to using this information for soil moisture retrieval, we will also provide LST as another potential Aquarius/SAC-D product. The soil moisture and temperature products will be validated using in situ observations from watershed scale soil moisture networks, and other satellite and data assimilation products. The Soil Moisture Ocean Salinity (SMOS) mission can play a major role in both pre- and post launch cal/val for Aquarius/SAC-D. While SMOS does provide L-band observations, it has two significant issues that need to be addressed relative to Aquarius/SAC-D; radio frequency interference and the lack of an onboard sensor for land surface temperature. We have started to acquire an extended SMOS data set and have implemented a version of one of the soil moisture algorithms for use with the Level 1C data. Preliminary assessments of brightness temperature and in situ soil moisture have been conducted. Alternatives for LST information are being evaluated. Of all the planned L-band satellite missions, only Aquarius/SAC-D has a potential onboard capability to provide LST via the MWR. We are currently assessing the impact of using alternative sources of LST as surrogates when using SMOS observations and as an alternative to the MWR on Aquarius/SAC-D. Two alternative approaches are being investigated; numerical weather forecast (NWF) products and transferring information from other satellites.

Last Modified: 06/28/2017
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