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SMOS after five years in operations: from tentative research to operational applications

Abstract : The SMOS (Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity) satellite was successfully launched in November 2009. This ESA led mission for Earth Observation is dedicated to provide soil moisture over continental surface (with an accuracy goal of 0.04 m3/m3) vegetation water content over land and ocean salinity [1-2]. These geophysical features are important as they control the energy balance between the surface and the atmosphere. Their knowledge at a global scale is of interest for climatic and weather researches in particular in improving models forecasts. The purpose of this communication is to present the mission results after more than five years in orbit as well as some outstanding results already obtained. A special attention will be devoted to level 2 products and to the retrieval quality improvements from version 3 (at launch) to version 6 (release early 2015) of the algorithms. We will also show several operational products already emerging from this science driven mission after only 5 years in space. The main products of the mission are of course soil moisture and Sea Surface salinity, but also vegetation opacity (directly related to water content) including forests, surface dielectric constant for level two but also brightness temperatures at the surface, strong winds, root zone soil moisture and RFI (radio frequency interferences) maps. From data several groups have started making new products several of them being either operational or on the verge of being such. We will show some of them or refer to related presentations. They include freeze defreeze (FMI), thin sea ice (Klimat Center Hamburg), near real time brightness temperatures and soon soil moisture (ECMWF), root zone soil moisture and drought indices (USDA and CESBIO). We are also working on more elaborate products such water fractions, flood risk indicator, Improved precipitation with use of assimilated SMOS data, etc.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, June 2, 2020 - 11:26:38 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, October 20, 2021 - 12:24:53 AM


  • HAL Id : hal-02740636, version 1
  • PRODINRA : 305852


Yann H. Kerr, Susanne Mecklenburg, Steven Delwart, Jean-Pierre Wigneron, Paolo Ferrazzoli, et al.. SMOS after five years in operations: from tentative research to operational applications. 2. SMOS Science Conference, European Space Agency (ESA). INT.; Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales (CNES). FRA.; European Society for Agronomy (ESA). INT., May 2015, Madrid, Spain. ⟨hal-02740636⟩



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