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3D-Earth The goal of this project is establish a global 3D reference model model of the crust and upper mantle based on the analysis of satellite gravity and (electro-)magnetic missions in combination with seismological models and analyse the feedback [...]UNIVERSITY OF KIEL (DE)Sciencescience, solid earthThe goal of this project is establish a global 3D reference model model of the crust and upper mantle based on the analysis of satellite gravity and (electro-)magnetic missions in combination with seismological models and analyse the feedback between processes in Earth’s deep mantle and the lithosphere. Selected case examples will provide the possibility to test these approaches on a global and regional scale. This will result in a framework for consistent models that will be used to link the crust and upper mantle to the dynamic mantle. The prime objective is to integrate, for the first time, seismological models and satellite observation towards a consistent image of the crust and upper mantle in 3D. Satellite gravity and (electro-) magnetic data help to transfer velocity images towards composition and temperature that reflect the tectonic state and evolution of the Earth and offer a novel understanding of the processes that shape our planet. The limitations and sensitivity of the different geophysical methods in context of their imaging capability are analysed and combined with forward and inverse modelling to be able to evaluate the possibilities of these approaches to reveal the Earth’s structure. For the inverse modelling, we will explore the sensitivity of joint inversion to the individual data sets and compare these to inversions relying on only a single or a few data sets. To analyse the structure of the deep mantle, we will try to combine knowledge about mantle conductivity and mineral physics with the geophysical observations. We will assess the role of Earth’s internal layering and mantle convection on the evolution of the Earth’s surface (dynamic topography). The data and methods we propose to use in this study will significantly supersede previous attempts and will be a first step towards an understanding of the Earth in space and time, a necessary step towards the development of a 4D Earth model.We will analyse the limitations and sensitivities of the different geophysical methods in the context of their imaging capability and plan to combine forward and inverse modelling to be able to evaluate the possibilities of these approaches to reveal the Earth’s structure. For the inverse modelling, we will explore the sensitivity of joint inversion to the individual data sets and compare these to inversions relying on only a single or a few data sets. Selected case examples will provide the possibility to test these approaches on a global and regional scale. This will result in a framework for consistent models that will be used to link the crust and upper mantle to the dynamic mantle. To analyse the structure of the deep mantle, we will attempt to combine knowledge about mantle conductivity and mineral physics with the geophysical observations. We will assess the role of Earth’s internal layering and mantle convection on the evolution of the Earth’s surface (dynamic topography). The data and methods we propose to use in this study will significantly supersede previous attempts and will be a first step towards an understanding of the Earth in space and time, a necessary step towards the development of a 4D Earth model.
4DANTARCTICA Ice sheets are a key component of the Earth system, impacting on global sea level, ocean circulation and bio-geochemical processes. Significant quantities of liquid water are being produced and transported at the ice sheet surface, base, and [...]UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH (GB)Sciencecryosphere, polar science cluster, scienceIce sheets are a key component of the Earth system, impacting on global sea level, ocean circulation and bio-geochemical processes. Significant quantities of liquid water are being produced and transported at the ice sheet surface, base, and beneath its floating sections, and this water is in turn interacting with the ice sheet itself. Surface meltwater drives ice sheet mass imbalance; for example enhanced melt accounts for 60% of ice loss from Greenland, and while in Antarctica the impacts of meltwater are proportionally much lower, its volume is largely unknown and projected to rise. The presence of surface melt water is also a trigger for ice shelf calving and collapse, for example at the Antarctic Peninsula where rising air and ocean temperatures have preceded numerous major collapse events in recent decades. Meltwater is generated at the ice sheet base primarily by geothermal heating and friction associated with ice flow, and this feeds a vast network of lakes and rivers creating a unique bio-chemical environment. The presence of melt water between the ice sheet and bedrock also impacts on the flow of ice into the sea leading to regions of fast-flowing ice. Meltwater draining out of the subglacial system at the grounding line generates buoyant plumes that bring warm ocean bottom water into contact with the underside of floating ice shelves, causing them to melt.  Meltwater plumes also lead to high nutrient concentrations within the oceans, contributing to vast areas of enhance primary productivity along the Antarctic coast. Despite the key role that hydrology plays on the ice sheet environment, there is still no global hydrological budget for Antarctica. There is currently a lack of global data on supra- and sub-glacial hydrology, and no systems are in place for continuous monitoring of it or its impact on ice dynamics. The overall aim of 4DAntarctica is to advance our understanding of the Antarctic Ice Sheet’s supra and sub-glacial hydrology, its evolution, and its role within the broader ice sheet and ocean systems. We designed our programme of work to address the following specific objectives: Creating and consolidating an unprecedented dataset composed of ice-sheet wide hydrology and lithospheric products, Earth Observation datasets, and state of the art ice-sheet and hydrology models Improving our understanding of the physical interaction between electromagnetic radiation, the ice sheet, and liquid water Developing techniques and algorithms to detect surface and basal melting from satellite observations in conjunction with numerical modelling Applying these new techniques at local sites and across the continental ice sheet to monitor water dynamics and derive new hydrology datasets Performing a scientific assessment of Antarctic Ice Sheet hydrology and of its role in the current changes the continent is experiencing Proposing a future roadmap for enhanced observation of Antarctica’s hydrological cycle To do so, the project will use a large range of Earth Observation missions (e.g. Sentinel-1, Sentinel-2, SMOS, CryoSat-2, GOCE, TanDEM-X, AMSR2, Landsat, Icesat-2) coupled with ice-sheet and hydrological models. By the end of this project, the programme of work presented here will lead to a dramatically improved quantification of meltwater in Antarctica, an improved understanding of fluxes across the continent and to the ocean, and an improved understanding of the impact of the hydrological cycle on ice sheet’s mass balance, its basal environment, and its vulnerability to climate change.
Arctic + Salinity Sea Surface Salinity (SSS) is a key indicator of the freshwater fluxes and an important variable to understand the changes the Arctic is facing. However, salinity in-situ measurements are very sparse in the Arctic region. For this reason, remote [...]ARGANS LIMITED (GB)Scienceocean science cluster, oceans, polar science cluster, scienceSea Surface Salinity (SSS) is a key indicator of the freshwater fluxes and an important variable to understand the changes the Arctic is facing. However, salinity in-situ measurements are very sparse in the Arctic region. For this reason, remote sensing salinity measurements (currently provided by L-band radiometry satellites, SMOS and SMAP) are of special relevance for this region. The retrieval of SSS in the Arctic represents a challenge, because brightness temperatures measured by L-band satellites are less sensitive to salinity in cold waters. An additional drawback consists in the presence of sea ice, that contaminates the brightness temperature and must be adequately processed. The ESA Arctic+ Salinity project (Dec 2018 – June 2020) will contribute to reduce the knowledge gap in the characterization of the freshwater flux changes in the Arctic region. The objectives of this project are the following: 1. Develop a new algorithm and novel approaches with the aim of producing the best quality validated SMOS SSS product in the Arctic region with its corresponding accuracy. Additionally, SMOS and SMAP data will be combined with the aim to improve the radiometric accuracy and the characterization of the product biases and stability. 2. Generate a long-term salinity dataset from 2011 up to date to be publicly offered to the scientific community. The products will be daily distributed with a temporal resolution of 9 days and a spatial resolution of 25Km (EASE Grid 2.0). 3. Assess the relation between the dynamics of SMOS salinity with respect to land freshwater fluxes (Greenland and glacier flows) and ocean freshwater fluxes (rivers and E-P balance) using model outputs. This has the objective to quantify the freshwater fluxes through SSS products. 4. Assess the impact of the new SSS satellite data in a data assimilation system (the TOPAZ4 system, both in forecast and reanalysis mode) with the idea that, if an improvement is demonstrated, the assimilation of SMOS & SMAP products in TOPAZ will be part of the new Arctic reanalysis and forecast products on the CMEMS portal. 5. Define a roadmap describing the future work to better characterize the freshwater fluxes for the Arctic regions. The output of this project will be of great benefit for the on-going ESA Sea Surface Salinity Climate Change Initiative (CCI) project, which started in February 2018. The outputs of the project will be: 1. The distribution to the scientific community of the best-up-to-date sea surface salinity maps from SMOS and from the combination of SMOS and SMAP with their corresponding uncertainties. 2. Explore the feasibility and utility of assimilating the surface salinity maps product in the TOPAZ4 model. The potential problem the project face is the sparse in-situ data availability in the area which is needed for a complete validation assessment. Other potential problems are the sea ice edge that has a direct effect in the brightness temperature and the RFI contamination. But several solutions have already been identified.
ARCTIC+ SEA ICE MASS The Arctic is a complex region encompassing different physical and biogeochemical processes and interactions among several components of the Earth system (e.g., sea ice, ocean, glaciers, ice caps, the Greenland Ice Sheet, snow, lakes and river [...]ISARDSAT SP. Z O.O. (PL)Sciencescience, snow and iceThe Arctic is a complex region encompassing different physical and biogeochemical processes and interactions among several components of the Earth system (e.g., sea ice, ocean, glaciers, ice caps, the Greenland Ice Sheet, snow, lakes and river ice, permafrost, vegetation, complex interactions with the atmosphere, people, etc.). Changes in the Arctic have a strong impact on the Earth’s climatesystem , the global energy budget, the ocean circulation, the water cycle, gas exchanges, sea level, and biodiversity. Considering that all of Earth’s inter-connected components respond to changes in temperature, the Arctic is a sensitive indicator of climate variability and change.Despite considerable research progress in understanding the Arctic region over the last decade, many gaps remainin observational capabilities and scientific knowledge. These gaps limit present ability to understand and interpret on-going processes, prediction capabilities and forecasting in the Arctic region, thereby hampering evidence-based decision making. Addressing these gaps represents a key priority in order to establish a solid scientific basis for the development of future information servicesfor the Arctic.In this context, the 20th January 2015, ESA and the Cryosphere project of the World Climate Research programme (CliC-WCRP) organised a scientific consultation meeting in Tromso with the main objective of gathering recommendations from the scientificcommunity on the most pressing priorities for Arctic research, where EO may contribute in the coming decade. The workshop resulted ina report listing a number of different priority areas that will contribute to establish an strong focus on Arctic research in thenext components of ESA EO programmes for the period 2017-2021.In order to put words in actions, this ITT aims at addressing someofthepriorities identified in Tromso as an starting point for future activities. In particular, with this ITT, a number of priority areas will be addressed at feasibility and demonstration level with the ultimate target of establishing a solid scientific basis to initiate larger research actions from 2017.To this end, with this ITT ESA plans to place 4 parallel contracts adressing different priority areas as identified by the scientific community.In this context, Arctic+ aims at advancing towards the achievement ofsome of the most pressing priorities in Arctic science, where EO may contribute. In particular, the main overarching project objectiveis threefold: 1) Supporting the development of novel products and enhanced data sets responding to the needs of the Arctic science community;2) Fostering new scientific results addressing the main priority areas of Arctic research;3) Preparing a solid scientific basis for larger activities addressing the priorities of the Arctic science community; This shall involve the collaborationamong the different scientific communities involved in Arctic process studies, modellers and EO experts;In the medium and long-term the objectives of the project include:• To foster the scientific exploitation of EO-based geo-information products (maximising the use of ESA data) to respond directly to the needs of the Arctic scientific community in the context of selected thematic areas;• To support existing international efforts to improve the observation, understanding and prediction of ocean-sea-ice-atmosphere processes at different spatial and time scales demonstrating the capability of EO and ESA data to respond to the needs of the Arctic research community;• To foster the integration of EO data, in-situ observations and models in support of Arctic science;• To develop aScientific Roadmap as a basis for further ESA activities in support of the Arctic research.
ARCTIC+ SNOW ON SEA ICE The Arctic is a complex region encompassing different physical and biogeochemical processes and interactions among several components of the Earth system (e.g., sea ice, ocean, glaciers, ice caps, the Greenland Ice Sheet, snow, lakes and river [...]ISARDSAT SP. Z O.O. (PL)Sciencescience, snow and iceThe Arctic is a complex region encompassing different physical and biogeochemical processes and interactions among several components of the Earth system (e.g., sea ice, ocean, glaciers, ice caps, the Greenland Ice Sheet, snow, lakes and river ice, permafrost, vegetation, complex interactions with the atmosphere, people, etc.). Changes in the Arctic have a strong impact on the Earth’s climatesystem , the global energy budget, the ocean circulation, the water cycle, gas exchanges, sea level, and biodiversity. Considering that all of Earth’s inter-connected components respond to changes in temperature, the Arctic is a sensitive indicator of climate variability and change.Despite considerable research progress in understanding the Arctic region over the last decade, many gaps remainin observational capabilities and scientific knowledge. These gaps limit present ability to understand and interpret on-going processes, prediction capabilities and forecasting in the Arctic region, thereby hampering evidence-based decision making. Addressing these gaps represents a key priority in order to establish a solid scientific basis for the development of future information servicesfor the Arctic.In this context, the 20th January 2015, ESA and the Cryosphere project of the World Climate Research programme (CliC-WCRP) organised a scientific consultation meeting in Tromso with the main objective of gathering recommendations from the scientificcommunity on the most pressing priorities for Arctic research, where EO may contribute in the coming decade. The workshop resulted ina report listing a number of different priority areas that will contribute to establish an strong focus on Arctic research in thenext components of ESA EO programmes for the period 2017-2021.In order to put words in actions, this ITT aims at addressing someofthepriorities identified in Tromso as an starting point for future activities. In particular, with this ITT, a number of priority areas will be addressed at feasibility and demonstration level with the ultimate target of establishing a solid scientific basis to initiate larger research actions from 2017.To this end, with this ITT ESA plans to place 4 parallel contracts adressing different priority areas as identified by the scientific community.In this context, Arctic+ aims at advancing towards the achievement ofsome of the most pressing priorities in Arctic science, where EO may contribute. In particular, the main overarching project objectiveis threefold: 1) Supporting the development of novel products and enhanced data sets responding to the needs of the Arctic science community;2) Fostering new scientific results addressing the main priority areas of Arctic research;3) Preparing a solid scientific basis for larger activities addressing the priorities of the Arctic science community; This shall involve the collaborationamong the different scientific communities involved in Arctic process studies, modellers and EO experts;In the medium and long-term the objectives of the project include:• To foster the scientific exploitation of EO-based geo-information products (maximising the use of ESA data) to respond directly to the needs of the Arctic scientific community in the context of selected thematic areas;• To support existing international efforts to improve the observation, understanding and prediction of ocean-sea-ice-atmosphere processes at different spatial and time scales demonstrating the capability of EO and ESA data to respond to the needs of the Arctic research community;• To foster the integration of EO data, in-situ observations and models in support of Arctic science;• To develop aScientific Roadmap as a basis for further ESA activities in support of the Arctic research.
ARCTIC+ THEME 3 – FRESH WATER FLUXES (ArcFlux) The Arctic is a complex region encompassing different physical and biogeochemical processes and interactions among several components of the Earth system (e.g., sea ice, ocean, glaciers, ice caps, the Greenland Ice Sheet, snow, lakes and river [...]TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY OF DENMARK (DK)Sciencescience, water cycle and hydrology, water resourcesThe Arctic is a complex region encompassing different physical and biogeochemical processes and interactions among several components of the Earth system (e.g., sea ice, ocean, glaciers, ice caps, the Greenland Ice Sheet, snow, lakes and river ice, permafrost, vegetation, complex interactions with the atmosphere, people, etc.). Changes in the Arctic have a strong impact on the Earth’s climatesystem , the global energy budget, the ocean circulation, the water cycle, gas exchanges, sea level, and biodiversity. Considering that all of Earth’s inter-connected components respond to changes in temperature, the Arctic is a sensitive indicator of climate variability and change.Despite considerable research progress in understanding the Arctic region over the last decade, many gaps remainin observational capabilities and scientific knowledge. These gaps limit present ability to understand and interpret on-going processes, prediction capabilities and forecasting in the Arctic region, thereby hampering evidence-based decision making. Addressing these gaps represents a key priority in order to establish a solid scientific basis for the development of future information servicesfor the Arctic.In this context, the 20th January 2015, ESA and the Cryosphere project of the World Climate Research programme (CliC-WCRP) organised a scientific consultation meeting in Tromso with the main objective of gathering recommendations from the scientificcommunity on the most pressing priorities for Arctic research, where EO may contribute in the coming decade. The workshop resulted ina report listing a number of different priority areas that will contribute to establish an strong focus on Arctic research in thenext components of ESA EO programmes for the period 2017-2021.In order to put words in actions, this ITT aims at addressing someofthepriorities identified in Tromso as an starting point for future activities. In particular, with this ITT, a number of priority areas will be addressed at feasibility and demonstration level with the ultimate target of establishing a solid scientific basis to initiate larger research actions from 2017.To this end, with this ITT ESA plans to place 4 parallel contracts adressing different priority areas as identified by the scientific community.In this context, Arctic+ aims at advancing towards the achievement ofsome of the most pressing priorities in Arctic science, where EO may contribute. In particular, the main overarching project objectiveis threefold: 1) Supporting the development of novel products and enhanced data sets responding to the needs of the Arctic science community;2) Fostering new scientific results addressing the main priority areas of Arctic research;3) Preparing a solid scientific basis for larger activities addressing the priorities of the Arctic science community; This shall involve the collaborationamong the different scientific communities involved in Arctic process studies, modellers and EO experts;In the medium and long-term the objectives of the project include:• To foster the scientific exploitation of EO-based geo-information products (maximising the use of ESA data) to respond directly to the needs of the Arctic scientific community in the context of selected thematic areas;• To support existing international efforts to improve the observation, understanding and prediction of ocean-sea-ice-atmosphere processes at different spatial and time scales demonstrating the capability of EO and ESA data to respond to the needs of the Arctic research community;• To foster the integration of EO data, in-situ observations and models in support of Arctic science;• To develop aScientific Roadmap as a basis for further ESA activities in support of the Arctic research.
ArcticSummIT: Arctic Summer Ice Thickness Living Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Jack Landy.

Arctic-SummIT will deliver, for the first time, a sea ice thickness product during summer months from the ESA Cryosat-2 satellite. As the extent of Arctic sea ice has [...]
UNIVERSITY OF BRISTOL (GB)Sciencecryosphere, living planet fellows, polar science cluster, scienceLiving Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Jack Landy. Arctic-SummIT will deliver, for the first time, a sea ice thickness product during summer months from the ESA Cryosat-2 satellite. As the extent of Arctic sea ice has declined at unprecedented speed over the past few decades, we have been able to view only limited snapshots of the ice cover’s thickness. Pan-Arctic observations of sea ice thickness have been obtained in recent years by satellite altimeters such as ICESat and Cryosat-2, but conventionally these data are only available during winter months. Our current understanding of basin-scale sea ice melting patterns during summer are limited to poorly-constrained ice-ocean model simulations, at a time when the ice cover is most dynamic, not to mention biological productivity and ice-ocean geochemical fluxes are most active. Moreover, advanced knowledge of ice conditions – thickness in particular – are critical for managing sustainable commercial enterprises, such as shipping and oil & gas extraction, in the northern polar seas. This project will develop a novel algorithm for obtaining sea ice thickness from satellite altimetry, even as the ice is melting. The conventional technique for separating sea ice from water (i.e. leads within the ice pack) relies on classifying altimeter waveforms through the shape of echoes, but breaks down when meltwater ponds forming at the ice surface appear the same as leads. However, pilot research alongside partners from the Canadian Ice Service (CIS) has demonstrated that other characteristics of the Cryosat-2 echoes, particularly the calibrated backscatter coefficient of the radar, can separate ice from ocean regardless of the surface melting state. Arctic-SummIT will develop this exciting discovery into a rigorous method for measuring sea ice thickness during summer months. By the end of the project, a unique, pan-Arctic sea ice thickness product will be produced for July-September over the full Cryosat-2 data record: 2011-2018+, filling the summer ‘gap’ we have presently. Exchange of sea ice between the central Arctic Ocean and, for instance, the Canadian Arctic Archipelago (CAA) or Fram Strait will then be determined from the product of ice volume from Cryosat-2, and high-resolution ice drift speed obtained from Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) imagery including the ESA Sentinel-1 constellation and the Canadian Space Agency’s (CSA) RADARSAT-2. Seasonal ice volume fluxes will be made available to the academic community, alongside the new summer sea ice thickness product, through an online portal hosted via ESA at the University of Bristol.
ARKTALAS HOAVVA PROJECT The multi-disciplinary, long-term, satellite-based Earth Observations (EO) form a tremendous synergy of data and information products that should to be more systematically and consistently explored, from the short synoptic time scales to the [...]NANSEN ENVIRONMENTAL AND REMOTE SENSING CENTER (NO)Sciencecryosphere, ocean science cluster, oceans, polar science cluster, scienceThe multi-disciplinary, long-term, satellite-based Earth Observations (EO) form a tremendous synergy of data and information products that should to be more systematically and consistently explored, from the short synoptic time scales to the longer decadal time scales. This lays the rationale for the ESA funded Arktalas Hoavva study project. A stepwise multi-modal analyses framework approach benefitting from native resolution satellite observations together with complementary in-situ data, model fields, analyses and visualization system and data assimilation tools will be applied.  Following this approach, the overall goal is to remove knowledge gaps and advance the insight and quantitative understanding of sea ice, ocean and atmosphere interactive processes and their mutual feedback across a broad range of temporal and spatial scales. In turn, four major existing interlinked Arctic Scientific research Challenges (ASC) will be investigated, including: ASC-1: Characterize Arctic Amplification and its impact (ASC-1) Central elements (not exclusive) are: – reduction in sea ice extent and concentration; – changes in albedo; – changes in the radiation balance; – increased air temperature; – delayed onset of sea ice freezing; – early onset of sea ice melting; – increasing area of melt ponds and polynias; – increased lead fraction; – changes in snow cover and SWE; – changes in ocean-atmosphere momentum, heat exchange and gas exchanges; – reduction in fast ice area; – thinning of sea ice thickness; – changes in optical conditions in the upper ocean with influence on the biology and marine ecosystem; – more favourable conditions for sea ice drift; – more meltwater; – larger fetch; – enhanced wave-sea ice interaction; – more wave induced sea ice break-up; – modifications to atmospheric boundary layer and changes in weather pattern; – influence on Arctic vortex and hence teleconnection to mid-latitudes. ASC-2: Characterize the impact of more persistent and larger area open water on sea ice dynamics  Building on ASC-1,  this is associated with: – increasing momentum transfer to the upper ocean leading to more turbulent mixing and possibly entrainment of warm Atlantic Water below the halocline; – increasing Ekman effects; – changes in sea ice growth, salt rejection and halocline formation; – larger fetch and lower frequency waves penetrating further into the ice covered regions leading to more floe-break-up; – increasing lead fraction and more sea ice melting; – reduction in sea ice flow size, age,  thicknesses and extent and subsequent change in sea ice mechanical behaviour; – possibly more abundance of internal waves and mesoscale and sub-mesoscale eddies generated in the open ocean with subsequent abilities to propagate into the ice covered regions leading to changes in sea ice deformation and dynamics. ASC-3: Understand, characterize and predict the impact of extreme event storms in sea-ice formation Growing areas of open water within the Arctic Ocean and the neighbouring seas will be more effectively exposed to extreme events. Cold air outbreak and polar lows, for instance, are known to have strong impact in the Marginal Ice Zone (MIZ), including; – enhanced momentum transfer and vertical mixing; – enhanced sea ice formation; – enhanced formation of unstable stratification in the atmospheric boundary layer; – more low cloud formations changing the radiation balance; – set up abnormal wave field to strengthen wave induced sea ice break-up; – abnormal impact on the pycnocline and subsequent entrainment of heat into the upper mixed. A central question is eventually whether the Arctic amplification will trigger increasing frequency of occurrences and strength of extremes. ASC-4: Understand, characterize and predict the Arctic ocean spin-up The ongoing Arctic amplification and subsequent changes, mutual interactions and feedback mechanisms are also expected to influence the basin scale atmospheric and ocean circulation within the Arctic Ocean.  In particular, this will address: – freshwater distribution and transport; – importance of Ekman pumping; – changes in water mass properties; – changes in upper ocean stratification and mixing; – changes in sub-surface heat exchange; – possibly more abundance of mesoscale and sub-mesoscale eddies and internal waves generated in the open ocean with subsequent abilities to propagate into the sea ice covered regions. The Arktalas Hoavva project kicked-off 9 July 2019 and will be executed over a 24 months period through the following seven interconnected tasks with mutual input-output feeds as schematically illustrated in the figure below. One of the major outcomes of the project is six dedicated research papers emerging from Task 3 that are specifically addressing the Arctic Scientific Challenges. These papers will be published in peer review journals. Moreover, the project will develop a visualization portal in polar-stereographic configuration that will be connected to the Arktalas data archive and allow users to access and make use of the Arktalas satellite-based, in-situ and model-based dataset during the project.
Atlantic Meridional Transect Ocean Flux from satellite campaign (AMT4OceanSatFlux) This project estimates of the air-sea flux of CO2 calculated from a suite of satellite products over a range of Atlantic Ocean provinces. It deploys state-of-the-art eddy co-variance methods to provide independent verification of satellite [...]UK RESEARCH AND INNOVATION (GB)Scienceocean science cluster, oceans, scienceThis project estimates of the air-sea flux of CO2 calculated from a suite of satellite products over a range of Atlantic Ocean provinces. It deploys state-of-the-art eddy co-variance methods to provide independent verification of satellite estimates of CO2 gas exchange over the Atlantic Ocean. The project provides Fiducial Reference Measurements from the AMT28 field campaign (from 23rd September to 29th October 2018) to enable independent verification and validation of the satellite CO2 air-sea flux estimates both at point scales and on scales that relate to satellite data over a range of oceanographic conditions. Global algorithms that are being used to study ocean acidification from using satellite data are also being evaluated and refined within the project, using high spatio-temporal resolution underway measurements made on AMT28 field campaign.
BALTIC+ Geodetic SAR for Baltic Height System Unification (SAR-HSU) Height systems and related sea level observations are based on a number of measurement systems, which all have their own characteristics and deliver different type of observations. Traditionally, sea level is observed at tide gauge stations, [...]TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY OF MUNICH (DE)ScienceBaltic, GOCE, SAR, scienceHeight systems and related sea level observations are based on a number of measurement systems, which all have their own characteristics and deliver different type of observations. Traditionally, sea level is observed at tide gauge stations, which usually also serve as height reference stations for national levelling networks and therefore define a height system of a country. Thus sea level research across countries is closely linked to height system unification and needs to be regarded jointly. In order to analyse all observations they need to be available in a common reference frame. Within this project three major objectives are addressed. Connection of tide gauge markers with the GNSS network geometrically by the geodetic SAR technique in order to determine the relative vertical motion and to correct the tide gauge readings. Determine a GOCE based high resolution geoid at tide gauge stations in order to deliver absolute heights of tide gauges with respect to a global equipotential surface as reference. Joint analysis of geometrical and physical reference frames to make them compatible, and to determine corrections to be applied for combined analysis of geometric and physical heights. These objectives are addressed by the project team with complementary expertise. The Baltic Sea serves as test area with very good geodetic infrastructure in order to identify the capabilities of the geodetic SAR technique for height system unification and determination of the absolute sea level at tide gauges.
BALTIC+ Salinity Dynamics This project aims to study the potential benefit of incorporating satellite-derived Sea Surface Salinity (SSS) measurements into oceanographic and environmental applications within the Baltic Sea. For such purpose, a team led by ARGANS Ltd (UK) [...]ARGANS FRANCE (FR)ScienceBaltic, ocean science cluster, scienceThis project aims to study the potential benefit of incorporating satellite-derived Sea Surface Salinity (SSS) measurements into oceanographic and environmental applications within the Baltic Sea. For such purpose, a team led by ARGANS Ltd (UK) with participation of Barcelona Expert Centre (BEC / ICM-CSIC, Spain) and the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI, Finland) will develop an innovative SSS product from the measurements obtained by the Earth Explorer SMOS. It incorporates advanced techniques for noise and bias correction to deal with the specific difficulties that the retrieval of salinity has in the region: land/sea contamination, sea/ice contamination, manmade radio-frequency interferences, and limitations in the current dielectric constant. The project will generate data by modifying substantially the existing production chain from L0 data to L4 maps, aiming to obtain meaningful information for applications. The characteristics of the final products will be enhanced both spatially and temporally thanks to data fusion, in order to meet the end-user requirements. SSS accuracy will be also improved to meet the needs of the scientific community operating in this basin. In the first half of the project, the focus will be in improving the brightness temperatures and adequate the image reconstruction process specifically for the Baltic Sea. In the second half of the project, the emphasis will be in the removal of remaining biases and generation of the fused L4 products, as well as assessing the performance and impact it has in the various case studies. Specific attention will be drawn to investigate the added-value of this new product to address the scientific challenges associated to salinity, as identified by Baltic Earth community: salinity annual trends and budgets; insights of the coupling mechanisms involved in the interfaces atmosphere-ice-sea; climatological projections. In addition, it is expected to estimate how other types of studies would benefit of incorporating SSS, like regional biochemical models, or any other in which frontal areas identification could be of relevance. For instance, river run-offs, sea ice formation/melting and, marginally, North Sea water intrusions. The project benefits of the existence of a long time series of observations provided by SMOS, which allows the team to explore longer time scales. The expected higher time and spatial coverage will be key factors in the outcome of this project, in a region in which in situ observations of salinity are scarce or concentrated in the coastal areas. It is expected that the results of this activity will lead towards an increase in the presence of SSS data.
BALTIC+ SEAL – Sea Level The current knowledge of the water circulation in the Baltic Sea comes essentially from in situ observations and models. The Baltic+ SEAL (Sea Level) Project aims at providing a consistent description of the sea level variability in the Baltic [...]TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY OF MUNICH (DE)Sciencealtimeter, applications, Baltic, marine environment, ocean science cluster, scienceThe current knowledge of the water circulation in the Baltic Sea comes essentially from in situ observations and models. The Baltic+ SEAL (Sea Level) Project aims at providing a consistent description of the sea level variability in the Baltic Sea area in terms of seasonal and inter-annual variation and put the results in relationship with the forcing associated with this variability, using a developed dedicated coastal altimetry product. The objective is to create and validate a novel multi-mission sea level product in order to improve the performances of the current state-of-the-art of the ESA efforts in this topic: the Sea Level Climate Change Initiative (SL_cci). In this sense, this project can actually be considered as a laboratory in which advanced solutions in the pre-processing and post-processing of satellite altimetry can be tested before being transferred to global initiatives, such as the future phases of SL_cci. The Baltic Sea includes the two main areas in which the use of satellite altimetry has been severely limited since the start of the “altimetry era”: the presence of sea ice and the proximity of the coast. During the winter season and the sea ice maximum in end of February, 40% of the Baltic Sea is covered by sea ice. The Team aims to apply an unsupervised classification approach to all possible altimetry satellite missions treated in this project (TOPEX-Poseidon, ERS-1/2, Envisat, Jason-1/2/3, SARAL/AltiKa, CryoSat-2, Sentinel-3A/B) to get reliable open water observations and adapt the classification approach to the sea-ice/open-water conditions and different satellite altimetry mission characteristics (e.g. pulse-limited, SAR). The Baltic Sea area is also strongly impacted by Vertical Land Motion and in particular by the glacial isostatic adjustment. As it has the advantage of being an area very well sampled by tide gauges, which measure relative sea level, the Project aims at constituting a more reliable source to compare the absolute sea level from altimetry with the absolute sea level obtained by subtracting the Vertical Land Motion from the trends at the tide gauge and could even be the data source for experiments of differentiation between TG and altimetry trends in the absence of GPS measurements.
BathySent – An Innovative Method to Retrieve Global Coastal Bathymetry from Sentinel-2 The BathySent project aims at the development of an automated method for mapping coastal bathymetry (water depths) on the basis of Copernicus Sentinel-2 mission. The interest of using Sentinel-2 data lies on the capacity to cover large areas [...]BUREAU DE RECHERCHES GEOLOGIQUES ET MINIERES (BRGM) (FR)Sciencecoastal zone, ocean science cluster, permanently open call, scienceThe BathySent project aims at the development of an automated method for mapping coastal bathymetry (water depths) on the basis of Copernicus Sentinel-2 mission. The interest of using Sentinel-2 data lies on the capacity to cover large areas (National and European scale targeted), while benefiting from the high repeat cycle (5 days) of the mission. The systematic acquisition plan of Sentinel-2 is of major interest for studying and monitoring coastal morphodynamics. The proposed methodology avoids limitation of exiting techniques in terms of dependency on water turbidity and requirement for calibration. The main objective of the project is to propose a method for deriving coastal bathymetry on wide areas (National/European scale) based on Sentinel-2 data and assess its performances. Today knowledge of near-shore bathymetry is essential for multiple applications such as for the study of submarine morphodynamics. These data are vital for planning sustainable coastal development, coastal risks assessments (including tsunamis) and conservation of submarines ecosystems. Moreover, they represent a crucial input for near-shore navigation and submarine resources exploration. The reasons why space-borne remote-sensing techniques must play an essential role in retrieving near-shore bathymetry are threefold. First, space-borne imagery makes it possible to access remote areas with wide spatial coverage at high spatial resolution. Second, because space-borne imagery is acquired on a regular basis, a historical data archive is accessible for most sensors, which enables scientists to access information from the past. Third, the cost of the data is relatively affordable compared to airborne or ground missions. In the BathySent project, we propose to extract bathymetry from a single Sentinel-2 dataset, exploiting the time lag that exists between two bands on the focal plane of the Sentinel 2 sensor. To tackle the issue of estimating bathymetry using two Sentinel 2 images acquired quasi simultaneously, we plan to develop a method based on cross-correlation and wavelet analysis that exploits the spatial and temporal characteristics of the Sentinel 2 dataset to jointly extract both ocean swell celerity (c) and wavelengths (λ). Our team has already started to develop this method based on the French Space Agency’s (CNES) SPOT 5 dataset (Système Probatoire pour l’Observation de La Terre) with promising results (Pourpardin et al., 2015). We called it the CWB method, which stands for Correlation, Wavelets and Bathymetry. Our method combines the direct measurement of c presented in (de Michele et al., 2012) with an original wavelet-based adaptive λ estimate (that we published in Poupardin et al., 2014) to retrieve a spatially dense cloud of (λ, c) couples that are then used to estimate water depth (h) via the dispersion relation presented in equation (1). The method preferably applies to the zone between the coast and an area of depth less than or equal to half the wavelength of the waves (typically up to a hundred meters deep), with the exception of the wave breaking zone.   Bibliography Poupardin, A., D. Idier M. de Michele D. Raucoules “Water depth inversion from a single SPOT-5 dataset”  IEEE Trans. Geosci. Remote Sens. vol. 54 no. 4 pp. 2329-2342 Apr. 2016. de Michele M.,  Leprince S., Thiébot J., Raucoules D., Binet R., 2012, “Direct Measurement of Ocean Waves Velocity Field from a Single SPOT-5 Dataset”, Remote Sensing of Environment, vol 119, pp 266–271.  
BICEP (Biological Pump and Carbon Exchange Processes) The ocean carbon cycle is a vital part of the global carbon cycle. It has been estimated that around a quarter of anthropogenically-produced emissions of CO2, caused from the burning of fossil fuels and land use change, have been absorbed by the [...]PLYMOUTH MARINE LABORATORY (GB)Sciencecarbon cycle, carbon science cluster, ocean science cluster, oceans, permanently open call, scienceThe ocean carbon cycle is a vital part of the global carbon cycle. It has been estimated that around a quarter of anthropogenically-produced emissions of CO2, caused from the burning of fossil fuels and land use change, have been absorbed by the ocean. On the other hand, significant advances have been made recently to expand and enhance the quality of a wide range of Remote Sensing based products capturing different aspects of the ocean carbon cycle. Building on recommendations made in a series of recent meetings and reports, on ESA lead initiatives and projects and on other relevant international programmes, the objective of the BICEP project is to bring these developments together into an holistic exercise to further advance our capacity to better characterise from a synergetic use of space data, in-situ measurements and model outputs, the different components of the ocean biological carbon pump, its pools and fluxes, its variability in space and time and the understanding of its processes and interactions with the earth system. To achieve this goal, the BICEP project will first synthesise the current state of knowledge in the field and produce a consolidated set of scientific requirements that define the products to be generated, as well as how these products will be evaluated and used to produce an enhanced BICEP dataset. Major emphasis will be placed on developing unified products to ensure that the carbon budgets made are in balance. Uncertainties in the derived products will also be quantified. A large in situ dataset of ocean carbon pools and fluxes will be created, to be used to evaluate and select the algorithms, with a focus on five key test sites, representative of the range of conditions in the global ocean. Using these selected algorithms, a 20-year time series of data will be generated, built through application of the selected algorithms to the ESA OC-CCI time series, a merged, bias-corrected ocean-colour data record explicitly designed for long-term analysis. The dataset will be used as input to a novel, satellite-based characterisation of the ocean biological carbon pump, quantifying the pools and fluxes, how they vary in time and space, and how they compare with ocean model estimates. The satellite-based Ocean Biological Cabon Pump analysis will then be placed in the context of carbon cycling in other domains of the Earth System, through engagement with Earth System modellers and climate scientists. Finally, a workshop will be organized, to be used as a vehicle to engage the international community in a discussion on how the BICEP work could be pushed forward, and integrated with results from other components of the ocean carbon cycle (e.g. CO2 air-flux and ocean acidification) not covered in the project, and how the representation of satellite-based ocean carbon work could be further improved in the context of large international Earth System analysis, such as the Global Carbon Project and assessments made within the International Panel of Climate Change (IPCC). The proposed work will be delivered by a consortium of twelve international Institutes, led by the Plymouth Marine Laboratory (PML, Plymouth, UK) and composed of top-level scientists, with collective expertise on Remote Sensing, statistical modelling, ocean carbon cycling, theoretical ecology and Earth System science.
BIOMASCAT: Assessing vegetation carbon dynamics from multi-decadal spaceborne observations Characterization of forest biogeochemical cycles is of paramount importance in Earth system science to understand contemporaneous dynamics and for expanding global land models in order to predict future trends of vegetation and climate. Thanks [...]GAMMA REMOTE SENSING AG (CH)Sciencebiosphere, carbon cycle, carbon science cluster, forestry, land, permanently open call, SAR, scienceCharacterization of forest biogeochemical cycles is of paramount importance in Earth system science to understand contemporaneous dynamics and for expanding global land models in order to predict future trends of vegetation and climate. Thanks to the increasing amount of spaceborne observations of land and ocean surfaces, data-driven models are revealing intriguing trends and mechanisms and model evaluation exercises are reaching global insights into temporal dynamics, which would not be achievable otherwise. The global characterization and the accurate knowledge of terrestrial carbon pools have been acknowledged as a fundamental variable for driving research in the terrestrial component of Earth system models. Traditionally, carbon pools are best estimated from measurements of forest inventories. However, these estimates are sparse in time and sometimes only locally relevant. There is therefore a strong requirement for data collection approaches that expand these spatial-temporal representativeness limits. However to date, despite the long term records of observations from space, only one dataset of biomass extended over multiple years so far – a 10 year passive microwave data. This project is developing a more comprenensive approach to the inforamtion gap by combining SAR and scatterometer data collected since the early 1990s to estiamte biomass properties. As the spatial resolution of both sensors is consistent with the range of length scales typcially used within ecosystem models it is expected that this development will provide a unique contribution to improving ecosystem modelling and assessment.
ConsIstent Retrieval of Cloud Aerosol Surface CIRCAS aims at providing a set of atmospheric (cloud and aerosol) and surface (albedo) products derived from S3A/SLSTR observations retrieved using the same radiative transfer physics and assumptions.The retrieval is based on the CISAR (Combined [...]RAYFERENCE SPRL (BE)Scienceatmosphere, scienceCIRCAS aims at providing a set of atmospheric (cloud and aerosol) and surface (albedo) products derived from S3A/SLSTR observations retrieved using the same radiative transfer physics and assumptions.The retrieval is based on the CISAR (Combined Inversion of Surface and Atmosphere pRoperties) algorithm. CISAR is an advanced mathematical method developed by Rayference for the joint retrieval of surface reflectance and atmospheric (cloud and aerosols) properties from observations acquired by space-based imagers.The CISAR algorithm relies on the FASTRE radiative transfer model that describes surface reflectance and atmospheric absorption/scattering processes. The lowest level represents the surface. The lower layer hosts the aerosols. Molecular scattering and absorption are also taking place in that layer which is radiatively coupled with the surface for both the single and the multiple scattering. The upper layer is only subject to molecular absorption.The inversion of the FASTRE model within the CISAR algorithm against satellite observations provides accurate estimates of the surface reflectance field, aerosol or cloud optical thickness and single scattering properties in each processed spectral band. An estimate of the retrieval uncertainty is also provided.As the proposed method retrieved both cloud and aerosol properties with the same retrieval algorithm, no cloud mask is needed to perform the retrieval. Additionally, the same algorithm can be applied over any type of surfaces, including dark or bright surfaces or water bodies.
Contribution of Swarm data to the prompt detection of Tsunamis and other natural hazards (COSTO) The main objective of COSTO (Contribution of Swarm data to the prompt detection of Tsunamis and other natural hazards) project is to better characterize, understand and discover coupling processes and interactions between the [...]UNIVERSITY OF WARMIA AND MAZURY IN (PL)Scienceionosphere and magnetosphere, science, solid earthThe main objective of COSTO (Contribution of Swarm data to the prompt detection of Tsunamis and other natural hazards) project is to better characterize, understand and discover coupling processes and interactions between the ionosphere/magnetosphere, the lower atmosphere and the Earth’s surface and sea level vertical displacements. Natural Hazards induced by tsunamis, earthquakes and volcano eruptions occurring mostly around the areas with large human population have caused tragedies resulting in death of many people during and after these violent events, as well as inevitable environmental devastation. The proposed research effort targets to tsunamis that are the result of earthquakes, volcano eruptions or landslides. An early warning for tsunami occurrence, and especially an estimation of the amplitude of a tsunami is still a challenge. In the range approximately between 5 and 15 minutes, the waves generated at the sea surface associated with tsunami can reach ionospheric altitudes, creating measurable fluctuations in the ionospheric plasma and consequently in Total Electron Content (TEC). At an altitude of about 300 km, the neutral atmosphere is strongly coupled with the ionospheric plasma producing perturbations in the electron density (ED). These perturbations are visible in the TEC parameter calculated from the data acquired from dual-frequency GNSS receivers, as well as in the ionograms and resulting ED profiles. The COSTO project team will exploit existing modelling techniques for the identification and tracking of Travelling Ionospheric Disturbances (TIDs). Our methods are based on data assimilation methods using empirical models as background. These models based primarily on GNSS and ionosonde networks observations provide maps either of the TEC or of the ED at various altitudes. The less dense is the observing network, the highest is the uncertainty, which is the case over the oceans. The ionospheric-based tsunami detection method is much more accurate when based on the availability of dense networks of GNSS receivers and/or ionospheric sounders. These networks are sufficiently dense in the land, but there is a sparsity of observation points over the oceans. We believe that the use of Swarm data can shall improve the detection capability, especially over the oceans where the tsunami occurrence is expected. Therefore, TEC and ED models will be upgraded with the ingestion of dual-frequency onboard GNSS and Langmuir probe (LP) data from Swarm satellites, and advanced value-added products for tsunami early detection will be proposed. In the COSTO project, we will attempt to assimilate Swarm in situ LP ED data and TEC data into ED maps calculated from the 3D-TaD model at various heights. Ingesting in situ ED data from Swarm in the grids of TEC and ED, as well as taking into account the topside slant electron content observations from the POD GNSS antenna, will provide significant improvement in the temporal and spatial resolution of the ionospheric maps. Therefore, we expect to be able to specify more accurately the characteristics of TIDs triggered by the tsunamis. This is one of the main targets of the project: to ingest the Swarm ionospheric measurements in an evolved version of different algorithms developed by authors of this proposal to detect Medium-Scale TIDs (MSTIDs) related with tsunamis. We will also try to identify the typology of tsunamis that give rise of effects on the ionosphere, and those that do not and focus on different coupling processes and interactions between the ionosphere/magnetosphere and the lower atmosphere.
CryoSat Plus For Oceans (CP4O) The “CryoSat Plus for Oceans” (CP4O) project, supported by the ESA Support to Science Element (STSE) Programme and by CNES, was dedicated to the exploitation of CryoSat-2 data over the open and coastal ocean. The general objectives of the CP4O [...]SATELLITE OCEANOGRAPHIC CONSULTANTS LTD. (GB)Sciencealtimeter, coastal zone, oceans, polar science cluster, SAR, SARin, scienceThe “CryoSat Plus for Oceans” (CP4O) project, supported by the ESA Support to Science Element (STSE) Programme and by CNES, was dedicated to the exploitation of CryoSat-2 data over the open and coastal ocean. The general objectives of the CP4O project were: To build a sound scientific basis for new oceanographic applications of CryoSat­-2 data; to generate and evaluate new methods and products that will enable the full exploitation of the capabilities of the CryoSat-2 SIRAL altimeter, and to ensure that the scientific return of the CryoSat-­2 mission is maximised. However, whilst the results from CP4O were highly promising and confirmed the potential of SAR altimetry to support new scientific and operational oceanographic applications, it was also apparent that further work was needed in some key areas to fully realise the original project objectives. Thus, after the end of the Project in 2015,  additional work in four areas has been supported by ESA under a first Contract Change Notice (CCN): Developments in SARin data processing for Coastal Altimetry. Implementation of a Regional Tidal Atlas for the Arctic Ocean. Improvements to the SAMOSA retracker: Implementation and Evaluation & Optimised Thermal Noise Estimation. Extended evaluation of CryoSat­-2 SAR data for Coastal Applications. This CCN ended in 2016 and was followed by a second Contract Change Notice, currently on-going, on the improvement of the arctic ocean bathymetry and regional tidal atlas. A detailed description of the specific objectives under each of the four sub-themes (Open Ocean Altimetry, Polar Ocean Altimetry, Coastal Zone Altimetry & Sea-Floor Altimetry) can be found at http://www.satoc.eu/projects/CP4O/
CryoSat-2 for enhanced sea-ice thickness and ocean observations in Antarctica: “CryoSat+ Antarctic Ocean” Why has Antarctic sea ice experienced a small increase in extent over the past decades in stark contrast to the rapid decline observed in the Arctic? What role are the Southern Ocean and sea ice playing in controlling the Deep Water formation [...]MULLARD SPACE SCIENCE LABORATORY – UNIVERSITY COLLEGE LONDON (GB)ScienceAntarctica, oceans, polar science cluster, science, snow and iceWhy has Antarctic sea ice experienced a small increase in extent over the past decades in stark contrast to the rapid decline observed in the Arctic? What role are the Southern Ocean and sea ice playing in controlling the Deep Water formation and thermohaline circulation and the melting of the Antarctic ice shelves and sea level rise? Only satellite remote sensing can provide the pan-Antarctic view required to fully understand these changes to the Southern Hemisphere’s sea ice and ocean fields in response to anthropogenic warming. Over the last 8 years CryoSat-2 (CS2) has allowed a radically new view of the ice covered Arctic Ocean, providing us with the first pan-Arctic sea ice thickness maps, dynamic topography and geostrophic currents, and indirectly a wealth of geophysical products ranging from Eddy kinetic energy (EKE), Ekman upwelling / downwelling, to snow on sea ice, and improved tidal models, or better resolved bathymetry at the bottom ocean. In Antarctica similar products have emerged but remain at a lower level of maturity. Specific challenges in the processing of the radar signal result from the complex surface characteristics of the ice covered Southern Ocean such as the sea ice flooding from snow loading or the highly fragmented and divergent marginal ice zone like nature of the sea ice cover. In addition, validation of sea ice and ocean products is hindered by the observational gap of in-situ and airborne data in the Southern Hemisphere. The overarching objective of this project is to address these issues by developing new approaches and algorithms that could be implemented in ESA’s CryoSat-2 ground segment processor to produce state of the art sea ice and ocean products that will be validated against a comprehensive dataset of airborne and in-situ measurements and result in scientific progress for our understanding of the Antarctic Climate system and ocean circulation. The main objectives of this project are: Perform a thorough review of the scientific and technical challenges Survey, collect and document all relevant data sets needed for the successful development of novel, observational and model-based snow thickness products. Develop, inter-compare and validate multiple approaches to sea surface height and sea ice thickness retrieval on Antarctic sea ice. Specific approaches to be considered are: Novel LRM/SAR/SARIN methods for leads, polynyas, open ocean and sea ice classification Along-track processors over leads, polynyas and open ocean for sea surface estimation Along-track processors over sea ice floes for sea ice thickness estimation Pan-Antarctic gridded products of dynamic ocean topography and geostrophic currents Pan-Antarctic gridded products of sea ice thickness Preliminary inter-comparison of along-track and gridded products developed in steps b-e Validation over selected tracks and key regions against in-situ and airborne data. Implement the algorithms developed above and assess their impact and usefulness in addressing the identified scientific challenges. Build a scientific roadmap for future development and evolution of knowledge about the snow layer on Arctic sea ice. The main outputs of the project will be: An Experimental Dataset and accompanying User Manual Algorithm description documents Validation reports An Impact Assessment A scientific Roadmap The biggest challenges the project faces are the difficulties in validating data products against sparse or preferentially sampled, in-situ data, and in proving that a new method is measurably better than an existing method when applied to inherently noisy data.
CryoSat+ Mountain Glaciers The purpose of this project is to quantify the volume, mass change and contribution to sea level change of mountain glaciers using dataset from the CryoSat satellite radar altimeter. Here we propose to generate mountain glacier elevation and [...]UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH (GB)Sciencecryosphere, polar science cluster, scienceThe purpose of this project is to quantify the volume, mass change and contribution to sea level change of mountain glaciers using dataset from the CryoSat satellite radar altimeter. Here we propose to generate mountain glacier elevation and elevation change by (i) evaluating the ability of the current CryoSat products, (ii) investigating and implementing processing strategies such as FBR filtering, novel retracking, swath processing, in order to improve the current CryoSat products, (iii) validating elevations and quantifying their errors. The resulting elevation and elevation change will be used to generate estimates of glacier volume and mass change and determine mountain glacier’s contribution to sea level change during the life period of CryoSat. We will integrate our results with existing studies of glaciers change to build a spatial and temporal picture of changes affecting mountain glaciers that will be advertise via scientific presentation and submission as journals articles.
CryoSMOS In recent years the possibility of using L-band space-borne radiometers for monitoring the Cryosphere has been investigated using data available from new space missions ((ESA SMOS and NASA Aquarius and SMAP). The interest in L-band relies on the [...]IFAC-CNR ISTITUTO DI FISICA APPLICATA ” NELLO CARRARA” (IT)Sciencecryosphere, science, SMOS, snow and iceIn recent years the possibility of using L-band space-borne radiometers for monitoring the Cryosphere has been investigated using data available from new space missions ((ESA SMOS and NASA Aquarius and SMAP). The interest in L-band relies on the very low absorption of ice at L-band and the low scattering by particles that are very small compared to the wavelength. As a consequence, in dry snow and ice the extinction is low and the penetration depth is very high, which open new opportunities to probe the soil or water under the ice, or the internal layers of the ice-sheet. The CryoSMOS project, which was funded by ESA as Support To Science Elements (STSE), aims at investigating this topic by testing the capabilities of SMOS in the monitoring of Antarctica ice sheet and ice shelves. SMOS data were first in-depth analyzed and it has been observed that Tb can show temporal dynamic trends in the ice shelves and near to the coast where the snow could be wet, while it is more stable in time, but presents significant spatial features in the inner parts of the continent. Moreover, small but significant Tb temporal variations are observed also in the internal part at H polarization. Four case studies, which are in-depth analyzed within the project, have been considered: the estimate of the temperature profile of the ice sheet; the capability of investigating bedrock topography; the study of the ice shelves stability ; the monitoring of wet snow. For each study case the SMOS data have been first interpreted by using different microwave emission models which use as inputs data collected on the ground, when available, or from glaciological models. Simulated and measured Tb is in general in good agreement confirming that most of the observed Tb spatial and temporal signatures can be theoretically explained. Model analysis also shows that a better knowledge of dielectric permittivity of ice (especially of its imaginary part which is indeed very small) is required to further improve the results. Starting from this, inversion algorithms have been developed in order to derive geophysical parameters from SMOS data. Main obtained results are: the retrieval of temperature profile of ice sheet for large portion of Antarctica where the ice-sheet is stable (i.e. velocity < 5 m/year) ; the monitoring of significant changes of ice shelf properties and the identification of their origin ( i.e. bottom or surface changes) and the study of its stability; the improvement of bedrock map in the area affected by large incertitude (i.e. > 500 m); the detection of melt events which can be used in combination to information derived from higher passive microwave sensors. SMOS derived products have been delivered and are free available at CATDS (https://www.catds.fr/Products/Available-products-from-CEC-SM/CryoSMOS-project) . Results will be better assessed and validated by additional data (when they will be available). Moreover, future activity should be devoted to the investigation of other regions (i.e. Greenland) and to better evaluate the use of new glaciological models which are able to improve retrieval algorithms.
CRYOSPHERE VIRTUAL LABORATORY EXPRO + Despite considerable research progress in understanding the polar region over the last decades, many gaps remain in observational capabilities and scientific knowledge. These gaps limit present ability to understand and interpret on-going [...]NORCE Norwegian Research Centre AS (NO)Sciencecryosphere, polar science cluster, scienceDespite considerable research progress in understanding the polar region over the last decades, many gaps remain in observational capabilities and scientific knowledge. These gaps limit present ability to understand and interpret on-going processes, prediction capabilities and forecasting in the Arctic region, thereby hampering evidence-based decision-making. Addressing these gaps represents a key priority in order to establish a solid scientific basis for understanding earth science processes in the Polar Regions. The Cryosphere Virtual Lab aims at supporting the cryosphere scientific community to address those gaps promoting an Open Science approach, where sharing of data (e.g., EO satellite, in-situ, airborne, ancillary, high level products), knowledge, tools and results is at the center of the science process. Since more than 20 years, “Earth Observation” (EO) satellites developed or operated by ESA and other satellite operators are providing a wealth of data. The Sentinel missions, along with the Copernicus Contributing Missions, Earth Explorers and many other missions provide routine monitoring of our environment at the global scale, thereby delivering an unprecedented amount of data. This expanding operational capability of global monitoring from space, combined with data from long-term EO archive (e.g. ERS, Envisat, Landsat etc.), in-situ networks and models provide scientists with unprecedented insight into how our oceans, atmosphere, land and ice operate and interact as part of an interconnected Earth System. While the availability of the growing volume of environmental data from space represents a unique opportunity for science, general R&D, and applications, it also poses a major challenge to achieve its full potential in terms of efficiently accessing and combining the different datasets (EO data, airborne, in-situ…) and sharing scientific knowledge, tools and results in order to speed up the scientific process. Firstly, because the emergence of large volumes of data raises new issues in terms of discovery, access, exploitation, and visualization, with implications on how scientists do “data-intensive” Earth Science. Secondly, because the inherent growing diversity and complexity of data and users, whereby different communities – having different needs, methods, languages and protocols – need to cooperate and share knowledge to make sense of a wealth of data of different nature (e.g. EO, in-situ, model), structure, format and error budgets and speed up the scientific development process. Responding to these technological and community challenges requires the development of new ways of working, capitalizing on Information and Communication Technology (ICT) developments to facilitate the exploitation, analysis, sharing, mining and visualization of massive EO data sets and high-level products within Europe and beyond following an Open Science approach. Evolution in information technology provide new opportunities to provide more significant support to EO data exploitation within the Open Science paradigm. In this context, new ITC developments and the concept of Virtual laboratories make scientific networking, on-line collaboration, sharing of data, tools and knowledge among scientific communities not only possible, but also mainstream. The Cryosphere Virtual Laboratory (CVL) will become a community open science tool, where EO satellite data and derived products can be accessed, visualised, processed, shared and validated. In order to achieve this objective, the CVL shall provide access and facilitate sharing of relevant space and non-space data (aerial, UAV, coastal radar, in-situ etc.). Following an Open Science approach, the CVL shall mainly be designed to support scientist to access and share EO data, high-level products, in-situ data, and open source code (algorithms, models) to carry out scientific studies and projects, sharing results, knowledge and resources. The Cryosphere Virtual Laboratory will form part of an ecosystem of thematic laboratories capitalizing on ICT technologies to maximize the scientific exploitation of EO satellite data from past and future missions.
CYMS (Scaling-up Cyclone Monitoring Service with Sentinel-1) Tropical Cyclone (TC) observations over the global ocean are a key component in extreme events monitoring and in anticipating appropriate risk mitigation and emergency response at landfall. In particular, the Tropical Cyclone Programme (TCP) of [...]CLS COLLECTE LOCALISATION SATELLITES (FR)Scienceocean science cluster, oceans, permanently open call, science, Sentinel-1, SMOSTropical Cyclone (TC) observations over the global ocean are a key component in extreme events monitoring and in anticipating appropriate risk mitigation and emergency response at landfall. In particular, the Tropical Cyclone Programme (TCP) of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), allows tropical cyclone forecasters to access various sources that provide conventional and specialized data/products, including those from Numerical Weather Predictions (NWP) and remote sensing observations, as well as forecasting tools on the development, motion, intensification and wind distribution of tropical cyclones. The operational delivery of high-resolution TC observations from SAR will significantly help the tropical cyclone forecasters of the six tropical cyclone Regional Specialized Meteorological Centres (RSMCs) and the six Tropical Cyclone Warning Centres (TCWCs) having regional responsibility to provide advisories and bulletins with up-to-date first level basic meteorological information on all tropical cyclones, hurricanes, typhoons everywhere in the world. Moreover, the unique ability of SAR systems to probe high resolution observations of the sea surface from space coupled with a strategy to maximize the acquisitions over TC will allow to start building a new database for science applications. The first demonstration of the Copernicus Sentinel-1 SAR capabilities was first triggered in 2016 under the SHOC campaigns of the ESA SEOM R&D program. The combination of high resolution and wide swath observations at C-band together with dual-polarization capability offers a unique opportunity to characterize the inner core storm structures. The late programming of S-1 acquisitions by ESA and the high quality of SHOC products has successfully illustrated the potentials of S-1 constellation mission to be part of a dedicated multi-missions hurricane observation strategy, including other sensors such as radiometers (SMOS, SMAP), and third party SAR missions (Radarsat-2, ALOS-2…). Since then, IFREMER and CLS together with ESA/ESRIN have continuously monitored hurricane with S-1 sensors on a best effort basis, while engaging an increasing number of potential end-users and stakeholders and starting several studies for science applications based on this dataset. The main objective of this proposed project is to scale up this operational service (hereafter called CYMS –CYclone Monitoring service with S-1), in view of its potential integration as part of a Copernicus Service. The service shall provide validated and fully acknowledged products, be consistent, standardized, interoperable and harmonized across international institutions and bodies supporting European policies and the international charter of risk management. The service includes not only NRT operational wind field products, but also an archive center ensuring a continual improvement cycle and full data uptake by stakeholders.
DACES – Detection of Anthropogenic CO2 Emissions Sources The project aims at developing a new methodology for detecting anthropogenic carbon dioxide emission sources. CO2 data from OCO-2 and NO2, SO2 and CO data from Sentinel-5P are collocated. The plan is to analyze these data in synergy to better [...]FINNISH METEOROLOGICAL INSTITUTE (FI)Scienceatmosphere, atmosphere science cluster, carbon cycle, carbon science cluster, permanently open call, science, Sentinel-5P, TROPOMIThe project aims at developing a new methodology for detecting anthropogenic carbon dioxide emission sources. CO2 data from OCO-2 and NO2, SO2 and CO data from Sentinel-5P are collocated. The plan is to analyze these data in synergy to better detect anthropogenic CO2 sources and plumes. In detail OCO-2 XCO2 data is deseasonalized and detrended, and further correlated/clustered to the spatial distribution of other species such as NO2, SO2, CO. Further a direct detection of emission plumes is done for anthropogenic sources using NO2, SO2 and CO datasets, and collocating the plumes with XCO2 data. The corresponding CO2 enhancements and ratios between different species at local level is then calculated. The project has been kicked-off the 5th October.
Development of pan-European Multi-Sensor Snow Mapping Methods Exploiting Sentinel-1 The main objective is the development, implementation and validation of methods and tools for generating maps of snowmelt area based on SAR data of the Sentinel-1 mission and the combination with snow products derived from optical sensors of [...]ENVEO – ENVIRONMENTAL EARTH OBSERVATION INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY GMBH (AT)Scienceapplications, polar science cluster, SAR, scienceThe main objective is the development, implementation and validation of methods and tools for generating maps of snowmelt area based on SAR data of the Sentinel-1 mission and the combination with snow products derived from optical sensors of Sentinel-2 and Sentinel-3 missions. The developed algorithm will be used to generate multi-sensor pan-European snow products. A key activity of the project is the development of a retrieval algorithm for mapping extent of wet snow areas which exploits the full technical and operational potential of the Sentinel-1 mission. Round robin experiments between available algorithms will be carried out to select the optimum algorithm. The focus will be on the use of Interferometric Wide swath mode data which is the standard operation mode of Sentinel-1 over land surfaces. Particular attention will be paid to the capability of dual polarization data, and the exploitation of the high spatial resolution and geometric accuracy of the Sentinel-1 data. Because C-band SAR is not sensitive to dry snow, the combination with snow maps derived from optical sensor is required in order to obtain complete pan-European snow maps. We plan to use data of the Sentinel-3 sensors SLSTR and OLCI for the pan-European snow maps, and coincident Sentinel-2 based snow maps (with high spatial resolution) primarily for evaluation and assessment of uncertainty for the combined Sentinel-1 and Sentinel-3 snow product.
DryPan: Novel EO data for improved agricultural drought impact forecasting in the Pannonian basin The Pannonian basin is a sheltered region, with relatively low levels of precipitation (< 600 mm/year), therefore its surrounding mountains are considered a key water source. Over the last decades several drought episodes took place. [...]EODC EARTH OBSERVATION DATA CENTRE FOR WATER RESOURCES MONITORING (AT)Scienceagriculture, applications, climate, science, water resourcesThe Pannonian basin is a sheltered region, with relatively low levels of precipitation (< 600 mm/year), therefore its surrounding mountains are considered a key water source. Over the last decades several drought episodes took place. Scientific research groups with cross-border cooperation on drought monitoring and management were established including the Drought Management Centre for South-Eastern Europe (DMCSEE) (hwww.dmcsee.org) and the Pannonian Basin Experiment (PannEx). These act as a response to combat the increased frequency and intensity of dry spells and heat waves under climate change and the need to increase the capacity of the relevant stakeholders to manage drought events and their impacts. The DryPan project is funded by ESA and builds upon the experiences of the Interreg funded DriDanube products. DryPan’s objectives include: i) to develop and validate a set of novel Earth Observation products and enhanced data sets dedicated to characterise Drought processes in the Pannonian basin; ii) to foster new scientific results addressing some of the main priority areas of research in the region, where space technology may provide a valuable input; iii) to promote the use of advanced EO datasets for Drought Early Warning in the region by facilitating access to the developed products and results through a professional project web site exploiting advanced data access and visualisation tools; and iv) to develop a roadmap identifying additional science priorities as a driver for launching potential new development activities addressing the priorities of the Danube science communities in the timeframe 2020-2021.
e-Drift (Disaster risk financing and transfer) Disaster Risk Financing (DRF) can increase the ability of national and local governments, homeowners, businesses, agricultural producers, and low-income populations to respond more quickly and resiliently to disasters by strengthening public [...]CIMA RESEARCH FOUNDATION (IT)Enterpriseregional initiatives, scienceDisaster Risk Financing (DRF) can increase the ability of national and local governments, homeowners, businesses, agricultural producers, and low-income populations to respond more quickly and resiliently to disasters by strengthening public financial management and promoting market-based disaster risk financing. Recent improvements in quality and availability of satellite-derived characteristics increased the usability of EO products, allowing for better results and further synergies between actors, potentially expanding the market of Disaster Risk Financing applications. The Project: e-Drift (Disaster RIsk Financing and Transfer), financed by ESA and led by CIMA Research Foundation (IT), aims at improving the performance of the EO products and determine a fully automatic and reproducible way to service DRF applications. The e-Drift Virtual Platform enables an easy and timely access to various services and products guaranteeing high computing capability and direct access to the EO datasets of the Sentinel constellation. Services will cover several key areas of interest of the insurance market and of Countries that would like to transfer their sovereign risk. The e-Drift Virtual Platform will be released as a PAAS, so that can be embedded in the IT systems of the In-Sector Providers, and as a SAAS, so that can be used by In-Sector Providers by a unique and KISS End User Interface. The project is also creating a strong network between providers of value-added services utilizing EO data, In-Sector service providers for the insurance market and reinsurance companies as well as other concerned actors in the field like the World Bank, with the final purpose to create new or improved products and solutions for the Insurance sector. The project consortium includes leading companies in the EO value adding, and leading actors in the insurance market and concentrates as a pilot study area in South East Asia, more specifically on Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia.
Earth Observation data For Science and Innovation in the Black Sea (EO4SIBS) In the frame of the ESA Regional Initiatives, a set of coordinated activities between science, public sector, industry growth and infrastructure components focussing on regional priorities with high interest for Member States, a number of [...]UNIVERSITY OF LIEGE (BE)Sciencecarbon science cluster, ocean science cluster, oceans, regional initiatives, science, Sentinel-2, Sentinel-3In the frame of the ESA Regional Initiatives, a set of coordinated activities between science, public sector, industry growth and infrastructure components focussing on regional priorities with high interest for Member States, a number of Science and Application projects are being runned for the Black Sea and Danube region. In this context, the EO4SIBS (Earth Observation data For Science and Innovation in the Black Sea) project is dedicated to Ocean Science. The objectives of this project are: To develop a new generation of algorithms that can ingest the wealth of spatial, temporal and spectral information provided by recent sensors providing high quality reference products for the blue and green ocean. In particular, regarding Ocean Colour derived products, innovative, high quality reference products of Chl-a, Total Suspended Matter (TSM) and turbidity products will be generated for the whole Black Sea geographical area, with a special focus on the western part directly influenced by the Danube River plume. Merged products will be generated to combine the high temporal resolution of S-3 OLCI and high spatial resolution of S-2 MSI satellite products and capture the optimal spatio-temporal coverage over the Black Sea waters. Concerning altimeter datasets, Level-3 Sentinel-3A [2016, 2018] and Cryosat-2 [2011, 2018] along-track product will be generated and their impact for coastal sea level trend study in the Black Sea assessed, and Level-4 multi-mission gridded products over the [2011, 2018] for improved mesoscale studies. Finally, 10 year (2010-2020) of improved gap-free high resolution salinity products will be generated. To collect new data to support the development of novel algorithms and to propose laboratory analyses of the highest quality To build novel composite products that integrate the satellite information with that from robotic platforms and numerical ocean models; To assess how the use of EO data improves our knowledge of good environmental status (GES) and climate change in the Black Sea. In particular three scientific use cases will be assessed : Physical oceanography and biochemical ecosystems; Black Sea level dynamics and trends; Deoxygenation. To disseminate the developed tools and products to the regional and international scientific and end-user community through the setting of a web platform, the organization of dissemination events, the participation to conferences.
Earth System Data Lab (ESDL) The main objective of the Earth System Data Lab (ESDL) project is to establish and operate a service to the scientific community that greatly facilitates access and exploitation of the multivariate data set in the ESDL and by this means advances [...]BROCKMANN CONSULT GMBH (DE)Scienceland, marine environment, oceans, platforms, scienceThe main objective of the Earth System Data Lab (ESDL) project is to establish and operate a service to the scientific community that greatly facilitates access and exploitation of the multivariate data set in the ESDL and by this means advances the understanding of the interactions between the ocean-land-atmosphere system and society. To this end, the main tasks of the project fall into four main categories: infrastructure and operations, data sets and tools, use cases and scientific exploitation, and communication and outreach. The core part of the ESDL is the data in analysis-ready form, together with tools and methods to generate, access, and exploit the ESDL. The software to generate the ESDL and the data access APIs have been developed in the preceding project CAB-LAB. The modular open source approach adopted in CAB-LAB has proven to be convenient, flexible, and powerful and effectively meets user requirements. ESDL further evolves the range of available tools according to the requirements formulated by the different user groups of the service, while users may also contribute their own solutions and share them with others on github. The project continuously extends the datasets included in the ESDL. The additions imply both extending the data coverage in time as well as the introduction of completely new data sets.  Examples for specific requirements include marine parameters and the missing parameters from ESA’s CCI programme, e.g. Land Cover, Clouds, Aerosols, and Green House Gases. As for the software part, the main objective for these additions is to increase the ESDL’s utility and versatility and thus ultimately the uptake of scientific users, who will then have a powerful tool to advance our understanding of the Earth system dynamics. User uptake and scientific exploitation through the implementation of use cases is actively promoted by several tasks. The project adopts a three-stage approach and accordingly defines three different user types, Champion Users (CU, pre-defined use cases), Early Adopters (EA, Open call), and the Scientific Community (SC, free use). All ESDL users have in common that they are using the ESDL for scientific exploitation. While doing so, they are helping to improve the ESDL and the service provided, to increase the awareness for this activity and the offered service, and to extend the ESDL by contributing own source code and data sets. The ESDL is complemented by extensive outreach, communication, and training activites, which will foster user uptake, empower users to optimally exploit the ESDL, and eventually yield tangible scientific results in the form of peer-reviewed articles in international journals. Champion Use Cases: Four Champion use cases will be implemented in collaboration with distinguished experts  to demonstrate the wide range of different approaches that may be adopted with the ESDL: EM-DAT: Environmental conditions during societal catastrophes GEO-BON Colombia: Supporting regional initiatives in Colombia towards an Ecological Observation System Marine NPP: Primary productivity models in the ocean MDI: Biogeochemical Model Optimization Results: The Data Lab is accessible via registration https://www.earthsystemdatalab.net/index.php/interact/data-lab/ User Guide and Source code for Python and Julia https://www.earthsystemdatalab.net/index.php/documentation/user-guide/
EOCYTES: Evaluation of the effect of Ozone on Crop Yields and the TErrestrial carbon pool using Satellite data Living Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Jasdeep Singh Anand.

Terrestrial ecosystems are a major carbon pool, and so act to mitigate anthropogenic climate change. However, vegetation in these carbon pools are damaged by [...]
UNIVERSITY OF LEICESTER (GB)Scienceatmosphere, biosphere, carbon cycle, carbon science cluster, land, living planet fellows, scienceLiving Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Jasdeep Singh Anand. Terrestrial ecosystems are a major carbon pool, and so act to mitigate anthropogenic climate change. However, vegetation in these carbon pools are damaged by tropospheric O3, which is formed from anthropogenic NOx and aerosol emissions. Damaged vegetation cannot sequester as much carbon, so this will lead to a degradation of carbon pools, and a worsening of climate change. In addition, O3 exposure also decreases crop yields, and therefore poses a threat to global food security. Previous investigations into O3 exposure on vegetation have relied on long-term in-situ studies using eddy covariance methods. Such investigations are costly and extremely geographically limited, and do not cover most of the tropics and emerging economies. Additionally, poorly constrained factors such as CO2 fertilisation also increase the uncertainty of derived estimates of O3-related damage. Satellite datasets from ESA and third-party missions provide long-term global monitoring of atmospheric composition and plant productivity, and could be combined with existing models of land-atmosphere processes to better constrain the rate of degradation of the terrestrial carbon pool, and to provide more useful metrics on crop losses stemming from O3 exposure. This project will analyse satellite datasets of O3, and vegetation indices as well as use the JULES land surface model to assess the extent short-term and long-term O3 exposure decreases the terrestrial carbon sink and decreases crop yields, particularly near megacities where emissions of O3 precursors are most concentrated. These results will be validated against existing in-situ datasets, such as the SoyFACE experiments, along with historical crop yield data.
GOCE gravity gradients for time-variable applications (GOCE4TV-APPs) The gravity gradients of the highly successful ESA Earth Explorer mission GOCE (Gravity field and steady-state ocean circulation explorer), which have been reprocessed by applying enhanced calibration strategies in the frame of the ESA project [...]TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY OF MUNICH (DE)Sciencepermanently open call, science, solid earth, water cycle and hydrologyThe gravity gradients of the highly successful ESA Earth Explorer mission GOCE (Gravity field and steady-state ocean circulation explorer), which have been reprocessed by applying enhanced calibration strategies in the frame of the ESA project GOCE High-level Processing Facility (HPF), have reached a very high quality level, especially in the long-wavelength spectral range where the main time-variable gravity field signals occur. In the frame of this project, it shall be investigated if time-variable gravity field signals can be extracted from these newly processed gravity gradient data. Due to their direct relation to mass and mass change, temporal variations reflect mass transport processes in the Earth system, which by themselves are subtle indicators of climate change. Therefore, the GOCE gradients shall be analysed for and used in dedicated time-variable geophysical applications, such as the detection of earthquakes reflecting pre-, co-, and post-seismic mass movement, land hydrology reflecting changes in the total water storage of large hydrological catchments, and ice mass balance trends such as ice mass melting in Greenland and Antarctica. For this purpose, existing processing strategies based on spherical harmonic modelling of the gravity field, as well as promising contemporary processing and parameterization strategies, among them a so-called Mascon approach, shall be applied. The latter is routinely used in temporal gravity modelling based on data of the inter-satellite ranging mission GRACE (Gravity Recovery And Climate Experiment), but has never been applied to GOCE data yet, and will be developed and adapted for GOCE data assimilation and data exploitation. The main outcome will be gradiometry-only regional and global data sets of identified gravity changes, giving information about the amplitude, seasonal/periodic and drift behavior of the changes. The results will be validated against GRACE temporal gravity models. Especially, it will be evaluated if by means of GOCE gradients the spatial resolution of recoverable time-variable gravity signals can be increased. The data sets shall be provided in common and easy to use data formats in order to be used within relevant related fields of applications.
GOCE+ ANTARCTICA The overarching objective of this activity is to explore the potential of GOCE to improve lithospheric modelling over Antarctica, to reduce uncertainties in bedrock topography and to study the implication on GIA modelling based on the derived [...]UNIVERSITY OF KIEL (DE)ScienceAntarctica, GOCE, polar science cluster, scienceThe overarching objective of this activity is to explore the potential of GOCE to improve lithospheric modelling over Antarctica, to reduce uncertainties in bedrock topography and to study the implication on GIA modelling based on the derived information. This ismotivated by recent scientific developments, applications and new products that have emerged from ESA’s GOCE mission. In particular,a new data set, provided through the GOCE+ Theme 2 activity (Bouman et al 2014), should enable geophysical application and modelling over Antarctica with the goal to better understand and model the Earth’s interior and its dynamic processes, contributing to new insights into the geodynamics associated with the lithosphere, mantle composition and rheology. This activity shall investigate the potential to determine bedrock topography of the grounded part of the ice sheet with high spatial resolution and accuracy. Furthermore, the activity shall determine – with additional geophysical data and information – the thermal structure or composition of the upper mantle, and hereby to link crust and upper mantle. This will in turn allow to study Earth’s rebound (glacial isostatic adjustment, GIA) over Antarctica from the several kilometre thick ice sheets that covered Antarctica.
GOCE++Dynamic Topography at the Coast and Tide Gauge Unification (DYCOT) The objective of this activity is a consolidated and improved understanding and modelling of coastal processes and physics responsible for sea level changes on various temporal/spatial scales. In practice, this study shall combine several [...]TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY OF DENMARK (DK)Scienceoceans, scienceThe objective of this activity is a consolidated and improved understanding and modelling of coastal processes and physics responsible for sea level changes on various temporal/spatial scales. In practice, this study shall combine several elements: Propose and develop an approach to estimate a consistent DT at tide gauges, coastal areas, and open ocean Validate the approach in well-surveyed areas where DT can be determined at tide gauges Determine a consistent MDT using GOCE with consistent error covariance fields Connect measurements of a global set of tide gauges and investigate trends Develop and outlook how the approach could be further improved using improved coastal altimetry.
GODAE OCEAN OBSERVING SYSTEM EVALUATION OF SATELLITE SEA SURFACE SALINITY AND EL NINO 2015 (SMOS-NINO15) SMOS Sea Surface Salinity (SSS) is not yet widely used by the ocean modelling community. In part this is due to the technical challenges of assimilating satellite SSS and assessing the impact of the assimilation using objective tools and [...]CLS COLLECTE LOCALISATION SATELLITES (FR)Scienceoceans, science, SMOSSMOS Sea Surface Salinity (SSS) is not yet widely used by the ocean modelling community. In part this is due to the technical challenges of assimilating satellite SSS and assessing the impact of the assimilation using objective tools and reporting. The Global Ocean Data Assimilation Experiment (GODAE) Ocean View Science Team (GOV-ST) group Observing System Evaluation Task Team (OSEVal-TT, see https://www.godae-oceanview.org/science/task-teams/observing-system-evaluation-tt-oseval-tt/) was convened by GOV-ST to evaluate the impact of different measurement systems by running specific observing system experiments and producing an Observation Impact Statement Report. This allows GOV-ST to formulate specific requirements for ocean observations on the basis of improved understanding of data utility.This activity is focussed on the design, implementation and reporting of an Observing System Evaluation of satellite SSS during the strong El Nino 2015/16 event. Strong SSS signals are present in SMOS data prior and during to the El Nino event. Inaddition to SMOS, full use of the NASA SMAP mission data will be encouraged. The output will be a GOV-ST Observation Impact Statement Report focussed on satellite SSS, journal publications and a workshop dedicated to the findings and approach taken by the study team.
Gravitational Seismology This project analyses the extent to which tectonic processes at plate boundaries give rise to changes that can be detected as variations in gravitational acceleration. The requirements for sensitivity are now being fed into preparatory studies [...]UNIVERSITA DEGLI STUDI DI MILANO (IT)Sciencepermanently open call, scienceThis project analyses the extent to which tectonic processes at plate boundaries give rise to changes that can be detected as variations in gravitational acceleration. The requirements for sensitivity are now being fed into preparatory studies for future gravity measurement missions.
HI-FIVE: High-Resolution Forest Coverage with InSAR & Deforestation Surveillance Living Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Francescopaolo Sica.

Forests are of paramount importance for the Earth’s ecosystem, since they play a key-role in reducing the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and in [...]
DLR – GERMAN AEROSPACE CENTER (DE)Sciencebiosphere, living planet fellows, scienceLiving Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Francescopaolo Sica. Forests are of paramount importance for the Earth’s ecosystem, since they play a key-role in reducing the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and in controlling climate changes. The study of deforestation and development of global forest coverage and biomass is fundamental for assessing forests’ impact on the ecosystem. Remote sensing represents a powerful tool for a constant monitoring at a global scale of vegetated areas. In particular, given the daylight independence and the capability to penetrate clouds, space-borne synthetic aperture radar (SAR) systems represent a unique solution for the mapping and monitoring of forests. Sentinel-1, with its large coverage and short revisit-time, is a breakthrough technology, ideal for the generation of a constantly updated forest coverage map product and for the rapid monitoring of large-scale areas, aiming at detecting ongoing deforestation activities and forest disturbance. The main objective of the proposed research project is to develop and implement advanced image-processing methods and strategies for the generation of high-resolution maps of forest coverage and deforestation from Sentinel-1 interferometric SAR data. Even though the detected SAR backscatter already provides useful information on forest coverage and structure, the use of SAR interferometry adds valuable and reliable information to the classification method. In particular, the temporal dynamic of the interferometric coherence, with a sampling period of 6 or 12 days, is investigated and modeled for different types of land cover. The accurate estimation of InSAR parameters is of fundamental importance for approaching this analysis. The proposed methodology exploits nonlocal estimation methods to retrieve reliable information about InSAR parameters of the full-resolution SAR image. Different classification approaches are compared, from classical pixel/region-based classifier, to more recent machine learning approaches, such as Deep Convolutional Neural Networks. Furthermore, since both temporal and volume decorrelation phenomena affect the coherence measurement in repeat-pass systems, such as Sentinel-1, I further propose the use of TanDEM-X bistatic data (simultaneous acquisitions) as high-resolution reference to support the modeling of Sentinel-1 backscatter information and its InSAR coherence temporal dynamic. Indeed, the combined use of single- and repeat-pass data allows for the isolation of volume and temporal decorrelation and for a more suitable use of the coherence at the aim of land classification. Eventually, Landsat, Sentinel-2, TanDEM-X, and possibly laser data, together with ground truth references, will be used for training and validation.
HYDROCOASTAL: COASTAL OCEAN AND INLAND WATER ALTIMETRY HYDROCOASTAL is a project aimed at maximising the exploitation of SAR and SARIn altimeter measurements in the coastal zone and inland waters, by evaluating and implementing new approaches to process data from CryoSat-2 and Sentinel-3. Optical [...]SATELLITE OCEANOGRAPHIC CONSULTANTS LTD. (GB)Sciencealtimeter, bathymetry and seafloor topography, coastal zone, CryoSat, ocean science cluster, oceans, OLCI, rivers, science, Sentinel-2, Sentinel-3, SLSTR, surface water, tides, water cycle and hydrologyHYDROCOASTAL is a project aimed at maximising the exploitation of SAR and SARIn altimeter measurements in the coastal zone and inland waters, by evaluating and implementing new approaches to process data from CryoSat-2 and Sentinel-3. Optical data from Sentinel-2 MSI and Sentinel-3 OLCI instruments will also be used in generating River Discharge products. New SAR and SARIn processing algorithms for the coastal zone and inland waters will be developed, implemented and evaluated through an initial Test Data Set for selected regions. From the results of this evaluation a processing scheme will be implemented to generate global coastal zone and river discharge data sets. Case studies will assess these products in terms of their scientific impacts. All the produced data sets will be available on request to external researchers, and full descriptions of the processing algorithms will be provided.   What are the specific science and technical focuses? The scientific objectives of HYDROCOASTAL are to enhance our understanding of interactions between inland water and coastal zone, between coastal zone and open ocean, and small-scale processes that govern these interactions. Also the project aims to improve our capability to characterise the variation at different time scales of inland water storage, exchanges with the ocean and the impact on regional sea level changes. The technical objectives are to develop and evaluate new SAR and SARIn altimetry processing techniques in support of the scientific objectives, including stack processing, filtering and retracking. Also an improved Wet Troposphere Correction will be developed and evaluated.   Associated user needs, applications, and issues The potential benefits of global data sets will be investigated through a series of impact assessment case studies in the second year of the project. Case studies will consider different estuaries and coastal regions including the Bristol Channel (UK), the German Bight and South-Western Baltic Sea, the Venice Lagoon, the Thailand Coast, and the Ebro River and Delta. They each exhibit specific features, but common across the locations are flooding and erosion, sedimentation, the importance of accurate high resolution local modelling, the vulnerability of coastal habitats, the connection between river discharge and coastal sea levels. Inland Water Case Studies will consider selected river systems in China to investigate the potential to develop operational hydrological forecasting, lakes and rivers in Siberia and Ireland to investigate the impacts of lake size and riverbank configuration on the accuracy of water level retrievals, to quantify the fresh water inflow to the Wadden Sea, and to develop a global water level climatology.   Who are the End Users that have been or will be engaged? The project team includes key experts in the use of satellite data in coastal zone and inland water studies. External end-users will be encouraged and supported in accessing the data products to evaluate and implement them in their own applications.   Proposed solutions, outputs and products Outputs and products that will be publicly available include:- Detailed technical descriptions of the algorithms and processing schemes applied. Initial validation coastal zone and inland water Test Data Sets for selected regions, An improved Wet Troposphere Correction for the coastal zone and inland waters A final global coastal zone product, and a river discharge product for large and medium sized rivers. An impacts assessment report on the applications and benefits of these global products Educational and outreach material A final scientific roadmap with recommendations for further development of processing algorithms, for further SAR and SARin altimeter missions, and priorities for further scientific research in the coastal zone and inland waters.   Dependencies As well as altimeter data from Sentinel-3A and -3B, and from CryoSat, HYDROCOASTAL will require data from Sentinel-1 (river mask, coastline), Sentinel-2 (MSI) and Sentinel-3  (OLCI, SLSTR).   What and where are the gaps in existing capability? Previous projects and initiatives, most recently the ESA SCOOP (http://www.satoc.eu/projects/SCOOP) and SHAPE projects  (http://projects.alongtrack.com/shape) have worked separately to develop and implement improved processing schemes for inland water and coastal domains, but HYDROCOASTAL is the first project aiming to consider them together in synergy. The junction between the Coastal Zone and Inland Water provides a challenge to researchers as it represents a boundary between different science domains (hydrology and oceanography), and different satellite measurement regimes. It is also a region of high variability in small spatial and temporal scales, pushing to the limit the ability of satellite data in terms of sampling and providing accurate measurements.   Tools, Services, Software, or Portals needed Websites and tools that will be used by HYDROCOASTAL include: Data and satellite information resources ESA Sentinels online: http://sentinel.esa.int Copernicus: http://www.copernicus.eu Cryosat Missions and Products: https://earth.esa.int/web/guest/missions/esa-operational-eo-missions/cryosat Inland Water data and information sites ESA River and Lake website: http://earth.esa.int/riverandlake/ HYDROWEB: http://www.legos.obs-mip.fr/fr/soa/hydrologie/hydroweb/ USDA Lake DB web site: http://www.pecad.fas.usda.gov/cropexplorer/global_reservoir/ TUM Database for Hydrological Time Series of Inland Waters (DAHITI): http://dahiti.dgfi.tum.de/en/ Related Project Websites SAMOSA: http://www.satoc.eu/projects/samosa/ CP4O: http://www.satoc.eu/projects/CP4O/ SCOOP: http://www.satoc.eu/projects/SCOOP/ CRUCIAL: http://research.ncl.ac.uk/crucial/ SHAPE: http://projects.alongtrack.com/shape/ RIDESAT: http://hydrology.irpi.cnr.it/projects/ridesat/ Other resources: ESA online SAR and SARIn altimetry Processing (registration needed): https://gpod.eo.esa.int Coastal Altimetry web site (for papers and presentations): http://www.coastalaltimetry.org OSTST web site (for papers and presentations): https://meetings.aviso.altimetry.fr   What specific technical Tasks need to be done? There are four tasks to the project:- Scientific Review and Requirements Consolidation: Review the current state of the art in SAR and SARin altimeter data processing as applied to the coastal zone and to inland waters. Implementation and Validation: New processing algorithms with be designed and implemented to generate Test Data Sets, which will be validated against models, in situ data and other satellite data sets. Selected algorithms will then be used to generate global coastal zone and river discharge data sets. Impacts Assessment: The impact of these global products will be assessed in a series of Case Studies. Outreach and Roadmap: Outreach material will be prepared and distributed to engage with the wider scientific community and provide recommendations for development of future missions and future research.
ICEFLOW: Short-term movements in the Cryosphere Living Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Bas Altena.

Earth observation plays an important role in society and business, today, and more so in the near future. Several times a day, satellite systems acquire data over targeted [...]
UNIVERSITY OF OSLO (NO)Sciencecryosphere, living planet fellows, polar science cluster, scienceLiving Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Bas Altena. Earth observation plays an important role in society and business, today, and more so in the near future. Several times a day, satellite systems acquire data over targeted areas or with global coverage, which will only increase in the future. Imagery for velocity products will be acquired through spaceborne SAR (ICEye) or optical (Earth-i, Urthecast, Planet) instruments. Hence, demonstrating use cases with such data sparks innovation, and shows opportunities that inspire. For the case of the cryosphere, where change occurs rapidly, we will explore and exploit real-time remote sensing. Velocity information is a new dimension for such datasets, enlarging the product portfolio. The methods that will be shown during this project are transferable, and ready for the new era of Earth observation, where business activity from space will become an essential asset in this global economy. As most of such processes might not be grasped alone with (pixel-wise) change detection.
Impact of 3D Cloud Structures on the Atmospheric Trace Gas Products From UV-Vis Sounders In current atmospheric trace gas retrieval schemes exploiting UV-vis sounder data, clouds are treated in a simplistic way ignoring 3D structures and cloud shadows. In this activity, the impact of such cloud effects on trace gas products is [...]NILU – NORWEGIAN INSTITUTE FOR AIR RESEARCH (NO)Scienceatmosphere, scienceIn current atmospheric trace gas retrieval schemes exploiting UV-vis sounder data, clouds are treated in a simplistic way ignoring 3D structures and cloud shadows. In this activity, the impact of such cloud effects on trace gas products is quantified, building on statistical analyses of cloud observational data and on 3D Monte Carlo radiative transfer simulations for typical cases. Improved handling of cloudy scenes and mitigation of related biases is explored and tested on real UV-vis observational data exploiting cloud signatures in collocated imager data.
Improved Atmospheric Spectroscopy Databases Enable better exploitation of ESA atmospheric satellite missions by the measurement/provision of improved spectroscopic reference data sets.This project includes two main activities: one on the generation of improved spectroscopy in the SWIR [...]DLR – GERMAN AEROSPACE CENTER (DE)Scienceatmosphere, scienceEnable better exploitation of ESA atmospheric satellite missions by the measurement/provision of improved spectroscopic reference data sets.This project includes two main activities: one on the generation of improved spectroscopy in the SWIR (water vapour, methane and carbon dioxide) and in the UV band (sulfur dioxide) in preparation for the Sentinel 5 Precursor mission and one on the generation of a consistent ozone spectroscopy at different (UV and InfraRed) wavelength ranges.
Independent Component Analysis of Satellite Radar Imagery for Volcanic Processes – IMRICA extension Satellite Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) is a powerful Earth Observation tool for the analysis of subaerial volcanic deformation – a parameter that is critical both for monitoring hazardous volcanic systems and for [...]UNIVERSITY OF LEEDS, SCHOOL OF EARTH AND ENVIRONMENT (GB)Scienceliving planet fellows, SAR, science, Sentinel-1Satellite Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) is a powerful Earth Observation tool for the analysis of subaerial volcanic deformation – a parameter that is critical both for monitoring hazardous volcanic systems and for understanding magma storage in the shallow crust. The long duration and consistent acquisition strategy of ESA’s Sentinel-1 mission as part of the Copernicus initiative will increase the volume of SAR imagery suitable for analyzing volcanic deformation by an order of magnitude, and change the way that we: (1) use SAR imagery to monitor active volcanoes (2) understand the variety of mechanisms that can result in measurable surface deformation. The primary outcome of my ESA Living Planet fellowship is a demonstration of the application of Independent Component Analysis (ICA) to analyzing volcanic signals (Ebmeier, 2016). This provided a novel, robust method for distinguishing between independent and causally related deformation. My synthesis of global InSAR measurements of volcano deformation (Ebmeier et al., 2018) provides insight into the lateral extent and complexity of zones of magma storage beneath volcanoes. In the extension to my fellowship research (2018-19), myself and two PhD students use SAR imagery to (1) investigate the potential for processes internal to a magma reservoir to generate deformation signals [Eoin Reddin, PhD 2018 onwards] and (2) demonstrate the capabilities of SAR backscatter for detecting eruption dynamics [Edna Dualeh, PhD 2017 onwards]. Selected Related Publications: Ebmeier, S.K. (2016). Application of independent component analysis to multitemporal InSAR data with volcanic case studies. Journal of Geophysical Research – Solid Earth, 121, 12, 8970– 8986, doi:10.1002/2016JB013765 Ebmeier SK; Elliott JR; Nocquet JM; Biggs J; Mothes P; Jarrín P; Yépez M; Aguaiza S; Lundgren P; Samsonov SV (2016) Shallow earthquake inhibits unrest near Chiles-Cerro Negro volcanoes, Ecuador-Colombian border, Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 450, pp.283-291. doi: 10.1016/j.epsl.2016.06.046 Ebmeier, S.K., Andrews, B.J., Araya, M.C., Arnold, D.W.D., Biggs, J., Cooper, C., Cottrell, E., Furtney, M., Hickey, J., Jay, J.J.J.A.V. and Lloyd, R., 2018. Synthesis of global satellite observations of magmatic and volcanic deformation: implications for volcano monitoring & the lateral extent of magmatic domains. Journal of Applied Volcanology, 7(1), p.2.
INTENS – Characterization of IoNospheric TurbulENce level by Swarm constellation The purpose of the project is to investigate the turbulent nature of geomagnetic field and plasma parameters (electron density and temperature) in the ionosphere as recorded by the Swarm constellation during a period of 4 years (from 1 April [...]ISTITUTO NAZIONALE DI GEOFISICA E VULCANOLOGIA (IT)Scienceionosphere and magnetosphere, permanently open call, scienceThe purpose of the project is to investigate the turbulent nature of geomagnetic field and plasma parameters (electron density and temperature) in the ionosphere as recorded by the Swarm constellation during a period of 4 years (from 1 April 2014 to 31 March 2018). Specifically, fluctuations of these quantities, as well as their scaling features, will be thoroughly investigated during different geomagnetic disturbance conditions to shed light on the role played by the magnetohydrodynamic turbulence in creating multi-scale plasma structures and inhomogeneties in the ionospheric environment at different latitudes. Focused analyses of the parameters recorded by the Swarm constellation are expected to provide a reliable characterisation of the nature and level of the ionospheric turbulence on a local scale, which can be displayed either along a single satellite orbit or through maps over the region of interest. The same parameters can be used also to study space-climatological variations of scaling features of the geomagnetic field and ionospheric plasma according to different interplanetary magnetic field orientations. Swarm measurements will give the opportunity to get a precise characterization of the different ionospheric turbulence regimes of the medium crossed by satellites on scales from hundreds of kilometres to a few kilometres, when considering low resolution data, and from tens of kilometres to a few meters, when considering data at the highest resolution. Ground-based observations from the SuperDARN network at high latitudes and the ENIGMA array at low-middle latitudes will complement Swarm data. The obtained results will be interpreted in the light of previously theoretical, numerical and observational published works. The analysis performed at high latitudes in both hemispheres will allow, for instance, a thorough investigation of the North-South asymmetries, while the analysis at mid and low latitudes will improve our understanding about the impact of magnetospheric ring current variations on the ionospheric plasma at Swarm altitudes. The investigation proposed in the framework of the project is an example of the excellent capability of Swarm data to provide new insights on the ionosphere-magnetosphere coupling.
INVESTIGATING LIGHTNING GENERATED ELF WHISTLERS TO IMPROVE IONOSPHERIC MODELS (ILGEW) Some of the strongest lightning discharges occurring at the Earth surface generate short electromagnetic signals that can propagate at very large distances both at the surface of the planet and in space. During a lightning discharge, the whole [...]INST PHYSIQUE GLOBE (FR)Scienceatmosphere, ionosphere and magnetosphere, scienceSome of the strongest lightning discharges occurring at the Earth surface generate short electromagnetic signals that can propagate at very large distances both at the surface of the planet and in space. During a lightning discharge, the whole electromagnetic spectrum is excited, from radio frequencies to the visible and beyond. The conditions of the atmosphere and the ionosphere crossed by this signal affect its propagation differently in the different electromagnetic frequency bands. More specifically, when the lightning signal crosses the boundary between the neutral atmosphere and the ionosphere, at about 90 km height, the lower frequencies are spread in time due to the interactions with the electrons and ions present in the ionosphere. This phenomenon is called dispersion. It occurs because the charged particles of the ionosphere are bound to the Earth’s magnetic field lines and this induces changes in the direction and speed of signal propagation. When the lightning signal reaches a satellite at low orbital altitude, it is recorded as a whistler, a gliding signal that can be translated into a sound resembling to a whistle. ILGEW project (May 2019 – September 2020) intends to study these whistlers and improve the scientific returns of the ESA Earth Explorer Swarm mission that measures the Earth magnetic field using a constellation of three satellites. Whistler events can be recorded by the Swarm’s Absolute Scalar Magnetometer (ASM) only when the acquisition rate of the measurements of the magnetic field intensity is raised from the nominal 1 Hz to a burst-mode at 250 Hz. This allows the investigation of part of the Extremely Low Frequency (ELF) band where whistlers can be received and studied between 20 and 125 Hz. This part of the electromagnetic spectrum has not yet been systematically studied from space and it still presents many challenges for a complete understanding of the ground-ionosphere interactions. Specific burst-mode measurement campaigns are conducted during the development of ILGEW project, taking advantage of the specific orbital characteristics of Swarm satellites drifting slowly in local time, to explore whistler characteristics under different geophysical conditions. Whistlers received by Swarm satellites can be characterised by their dispersion, a measure of the relation between the signal frequency and its propagation time inside the ionosphere. The state of the ionosphere at the time of this event is a key parameter to determine the whistler’s dispersion: day/night conditions, low/high solar activity, all contribute to the variability of the dispersion. As a general indication, the more charged particles are present along the propagation path, the higher will be the whistler’s dispersion.Scientific objectives ILGEW project has three main scientific objectives: 1.    Characterize the whistler dispersion measured from Earth low orbital altitudes, in order to analyse the ionosphere below Swarm satellites, along the propagation path of the whistlers. 2.    Constrain the lightning activity that lead to favourable propagation conditions for the generation of detectable ELF whistlers at Swarm altitudes. 3.    Establish the benefits that can be obtained for ionospheric models such as the International Reference Ionosphere (IRI) by using the information obtained from whistler’s characteristics.
Island2VAP: Integrating Sentinel-2 and Landsat-8 to Systematically Generate Value-Added Products at High Resolution Quality and quantity of current high resolution optical earth observation data is unprecedented and provides an opportunity to advance remote sensing land system analyses. However, cloud coverage and a lack of gridded higher level products still [...]HUMBOLDT UNIVERSITAT ZU BERLIN (DE)Scienceland, scienceQuality and quantity of current high resolution optical earth observation data is unprecedented and provides an opportunity to advance remote sensing land system analyses. However, cloud coverage and a lack of gridded higher level products still hampers the widespread usability of the data. This research addresses these shortcomings by developing toolsets to combine data streams from Sentinel-2 and Landsat-8 and that allow for the systematic (i.e. weekly, monthly, seasonal-) generation of composited reflectance and subsequently value-added products (e.g. percent cover estimates, annual phenology metrics). This suite of generated products will be synergetically exploited in order to address higher level land-use science questions that cannot readily be answered using spectral data only. While methods are developed to be capable of working with most ecosystems, a specific focus is on improving agricultural mapping and analyses.
Machine Learning Methods for SAR-derived Time Series Trend Change Detection (MATTCH) The MATTCH project - Machine Learning methods for SAR-derived Time Series Trend Change Detection - aims to apply Machine Learning techniques to InSAR (Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar) derived surface deformation measurements, with the [...]TRE ALTAMIRA s.r.l. (IT)Sciencepermanently open call, SAR, scienceThe MATTCH project – Machine Learning methods for SAR-derived Time Series Trend Change Detection – aims to apply Machine Learning techniques to InSAR (Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar) derived surface deformation measurements, with the goal of identifying, among the huge number of measurement points (MP) identified by advanced InSAR algorithms, the ones exhibiting displacement time series characterized by a change in trend or, more generally, an “anomalous behavior”. This data screening step is extremely important to support the End Users Community in the exploitation of frequently updated (every few days) and highly populated (millions of MPs) information layers resulting from advanced InSAR analyses over large areas.MATTCH aims to identify whether and how a Machine Learning approach can be applied successfully to the “data screening and data mining” step (with a particular emphasis on the detection of changes in trends), relying on the experience in SAR data processing of TRE ALTAMIRA and the extensive knowledge of POLIMI (Politecnico di Milano – Dipartimento di Elettronica e Informazione e Bioingegneria) about Machine Learning algorithms and their applications.To capture the temporal dependencies in the long displacement time series, the main Deep Learning architectures proposed for the analysis are Long Short-term Memory (LSTM) and Gate Recurrent Unit (GRU).The main objectives of the project are:Making SAR-derived surface deformation products more user-friendly and effective, supporting the analysis and the exploitation of InSAR-derived data, through the generation of a reliable layer of information driving the attention of the final users on a set “hotspots deserving special attention”;Enhancing the SqueeSARTM processing chain, via the implementation of a Machine Learning approach for time series trend detection, which is expected to improve the reliability and reduce the computational cost with respect to the statistical procedure currently in use;Increasing the knowledge about Machine Learning techniques applied to Earth Observation Big Data in both TRE ALTAMIRA and POLIMI groups, strengthening an effective cooperation between industry and academia in this relatively novel research field;Increasing the knowledge of Graphic Process Units (GPU) and cloud-based services to perform high throughput data processing and flexible scale-up;Improving the exploitation of ESA Sentinel-1 data, by creating innovative solutions, spurring new services to end-users and hopefully increasing the Earth Observation market
Mapping and characterization of unstable slopes with Sentinel-1 multigeometry InSAR Being a mountainous country, with long fjords and steep valley sides, Norway is particularly susceptible to large rock avalanches. In the last 100 years, over 170 people have been killed by tsunamis in fjords caused by large rock avalanches. In [...]NORTHERN RESEARCH INSTITUTE (NORUT) (NO)Applicationsdisaster risk, permanently open call, SAR, scienceBeing a mountainous country, with long fjords and steep valley sides, Norway is particularly susceptible to large rock avalanches. In the last 100 years, over 170 people have been killed by tsunamis in fjords caused by large rock avalanches. In each case, the rock avalanche was preceded by many years of slow movement, with acceleration prior to slope failure. With several thousand kilometres of inhabited coastline and valleys, it is a challenge to identify similar hazards in an efficient manner. Once we suspect an area to be sliding, it may take several years of measurements to confirm it, and an extensive ground instrumentation to characterize the type of motion. The Geological Survey of Norway (NGU) is responsible for hazard and risk classification of large rock slope instabilities in Norway. They also assist the Norwegian Water Resources and Energy Directorate (NVE) with long term monitoring of high risk instabilities. A very important factor in determining hazard is the determination of rates of movements. This is predominantly done using InSAR, although GNSS and in situ instrumentation (crack meters, tilt meters, borehole instrumentation, total stations etc.) are also applied at site level. In Norway, there has been a significant interest from the public stakeholders (NGU and NVE) to use InSAR, mainly for mapping of landslides. NGU launched a development project in 2016, with Norut a prime contractor, to set up a national InSAR-based deformation mapping service, based upon satellite data from Sentinel-1. The first national deformation map, produced by using Sentinel-1 Persistent Scatterer Interferometry (PSI), was publicly released in November 2018. The system, when in operational phase, will provide updated displacement maps at a national scale, and with an open data policy. It is however well know that when the true displacement direction differs from the satellite line-of-sight (LoS), the sensitivity decreases and interpretation of InSAR deformation measurements may become challenging. Relating InSAR displacement maps to ongoing surface displacement processes can be difficult. A knowledge of the LoS direction for the applied satellite geometry as well as factors controlling the direction of displacement (gradient and aspect of the terrain, orientation of controlling geological structures) is required to understand how much of the true three-dimensional (3D) displacement can be observed. Combining InSAR data from ascending and descending satellite orbits can increase sensitivity for displacement by providing information about the displacement, decomposed into the East-West and Vertical vector surface. The resulting products will contain information about both the magnitude and the direction of surface displacement. Combination is possible in areas covered by at least two spatially and temporally overlapping InSAR datasets, from ascending and descending orbit geometries. By combining InSAR information determined from different lines of sight, the understanding of the type of movement taking place is improved. For example, surface parallel, mostly vertical, toppling etc. In this project, we will develop higher-order products based on combination of different InSAR datasets in order to ease the interpretation of site-specific deformation processes. The aim of our project is to define and develop geologically meaningful InSAR products to provide meaningful information about slope processes, which could extend the use of Sentinel-1 InSAR in landslide risk management in Norway.
MARINE LITTER SIGNATURES IN SYNTHETIC APERTURE RADAR IMAGES (MIREIA) This project complements on-going activities and other activities started under this call for proposals by focussing on optimising the techniques for the detection of marine litter in SAR data. This complements the use of optical data and [...]ISARDSAT S.L. (ES)Sciencemarine environment, permanently open call, SAR, scienceThis project complements on-going activities and other activities started under this call for proposals by focussing on optimising the techniques for the detection of marine litter in SAR data. This complements the use of optical data and modelling in order to progressively build up an integrated picture as to how marine litter (and marine plastics in particular) are entering the marine environment, how they are transporeted, how they break down and how they are impacting different ecosystems.
METHANE+ The ESA Methane+ project aims at exploiting the SWIR and TIR CH4 observations from different satellites in order to better differentiate between sources and sinks of CH4 on the regional and global scale. For this we will use the CH4 observations [...]STICHTING NEDERLANDSE WETENSCHAPPELIJK (NL)Scienceatmosphere, atmosphere science cluster, atmospheric chemistry, CrIS, IASI, Metop, science, Sentinel-5P, SUOMI-NPPThe ESA Methane+ project aims at exploiting the SWIR and TIR CH4 observations from different satellites in order to better differentiate between sources and sinks of CH4 on the regional and global scale. For this we will use the CH4 observations of TROPOMI on Copernicus Sentinel-5p, IASI on MetOp-B, and CrIS on Suomi NPP in combination with atmospheric inversion models. OBJECTIVES: Given the identified opportunities and challenges of the current generation of space borne methane sensors, and the scope of the current study, the specific study objectives are as follows: Providing support for the algorithm development for the CH4 SWIR retrieval from TROPOMI, TIR from IASI/CrIS, and joint SWIR-TIR retrieval from TROPOMI and IASI/CrIS. Assess the quality of the TROPOMI, IASI and CrIS CH4 retrievals by comparing data products generated with different algorithms and product validation using independent ”ground-based” measurements. Investigate the added value of combining CH4 SWIR and TIR in regional case studies. Infer global sources and sinks of CH4 from inverse modelling of 2 years of TROPOMI and IASI (and/or CrIS) data. Investigate the added value of the combined use of SWIR and TIR CH4 observations. Investigate the consistency of the SWIR and TIR CH4 satellite data, with model simulated transport and chemistry. Formulate a road map for future CH4 satellite remote sensing based on the outcomes of this study as well as parallel studies covering the use of CH4 from TROPOMI across the full range of scales. The Methane+ project started on 22-Jan-2020 with a duration of 2 years.
MethEO – Methane emissions in the Northern Hemisphere by applying both data from Earth Observing (EO) satellites and global atmospheric methane inversion model estimates The project will investigate Northern Hemisphere methane (CH4) sources and their connection to the soil freezing and thawing at high latitudes. We will innovatively combine methods for monitoring of CH4 (methane) emissions in the Northern [...]FINNISH METEOROLOGICAL INSTITUTE (FI)Scienceatmosphere, atmosphere science cluster, biosphere, carbon cycle, carbon science cluster, permanently open call, polar science cluster, science, Sentinel-5P, SMOSThe project will investigate Northern Hemisphere methane (CH4) sources and their connection to the soil freezing and thawing at high latitudes. We will innovatively combine methods for monitoring of CH4 (methane) emissions in the Northern Hemisphere by applying both data from Earth Observing (EO) satellites and global atmospheric methane inversion model estimates. The EO data consists of global soil F/T estimates obtained from the European Space Agency (ESA) Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) mission (from the SMOS+ Frozen soil project) as well as retrievals of atmospheric methane obtained from the Greenhouse Gases Observing Satellite (GOSAT) and the newly launched Sentinel 5 Precursor TROPOMI (S5P-TROPOMI) observations. The project has been kicked-off the 5th September. A first informal progress meeting has been on 20th December. First results have been shown and look promising.
MOHeaCAN: Monitoring Ocean Heat Content and Earth Energy ImbalANce from Space Since the industrial era, anthropogenic emissions of Greenhouse gases (GHG) in the atmosphere have lowered the total amount of infrared energy radiated by the Earth towards space. Now the Earth is emitting less energy towards space than it [...]MAGELLIUM (FR)Sciencealtimeter, climate, GRACE, ocean heat budget, ocean science cluster, oceans, permanently open call, scienceSince the industrial era, anthropogenic emissions of Greenhouse gases (GHG) in the atmosphere have lowered the total amount of infrared energy radiated by the Earth towards space. Now the Earth is emitting less energy towards space than it receives radiative energy from the sun. As a consequence there is an Earth Energy Imbalance (EEI) at the top of the atmosphere. Because of this EEI, the climate system stores energy, essentially in the form of heat. This excess of energy perturbs the global water-energy cycle and generates the so-called “climate changes”. The excess of energy warms the ocean, leading to sea level rise and sea ice melt. It melts land ice, leading to sea level rise. It makes land surface temperature rise, changing the hydrological cycle and generating droughts and floods. It is essential to estimate and analyse the EEI if we want to understand the Earth’s changing climate. Measuring the EEI is challenging because it is a globally integrated variable whose variations are small (smaller than 1 W.m-2) compared to the amount of energy entering and leaving the climate system (~340 W.m-2). Recent studies suggest that the EEI response to anthropogenic GHG and aerosols emissions is 0.5-1 W.m-2. An accuracy of <0.1 W.m-2 at decadal time scales is desirable if we want to monitor future changes in EEI associated with anthropogenic forcing, which shall be a noncontroversial science based information used by the GHG mitigation policies. To date, the most accurate approach to estimate EEI consists of making the inventory of the energy stored in different climate system reservoirs (atmosphere, land, cryosphere and ocean) and estimating their changes with time. At large scale, variations in internal and latent heat energy dominate largely over the variations in other forms of energy (potential energy and kinetic energy). The ocean concentrates the vast majority of the excess of energy (~93%) associated with EEI. For this reason the global Ocean Heat Content (OHC) places a strong constraint on the EEI estimate. Thus it is crucial to characterise the uncertainty in EEI and OHC to strengthen the robustness of this estimation. Four methods exist to estimate the OHC: The direct measurement of in situ temperature based on temperature/Salinity profiles (e.g., Argo floats). The estimate from ocean reanalyses that assimilate observations from both satellite and in situ instruments. The measurement of the net ocean surface heat fluxes from space. The measurement of the thermal expansion of the ocean from space based on differences between the total sea-level content derived from altimetry measurements and the mass content derived from GRACE data (noted “Altimetry-GRACE”). To date, the best results are given by the first method mainly based on Argo network. However, one of the limitations of the method is the poor sampling of the deep ocean (>2000 m depth) and marginal seas as well as the ocean below sea ice. Re-analysis provides a more complete estimation but large biases in the polar oceans and spurious drifts in the deep ocean due to the too-short spin up simulations and inaccurate initial conditions of the reanalysis, mask a significant part of the OHC signal related to EEI. The method based on estimation of ocean net heat fluxes from space is not appropriate for OHC calculation due to a too strong uncertainty (±15 W.m-2) for the science objective on EEI. The last option based on the “Altimetry-GRACE” approach is promising because it provides consistent spatial and temporal sampling of the ocean, it samples nearly the entire global oceans, except for polar regions, and it provides estimates of the OHC over the ocean’s entire depth. To date the uncertainty in OHC from this method is ±0.47 W.m-2, which is greater than what is needed (<0.3 W.m-2) to pin down the global mean value of EEI. This activity focuses on the “Altimetry-GRACE” approach to estimate the EEI. The objectives are twofold: To improve global OHC estimation from space and its associated uncertainty by developing novel algorithms; To assess our estimation by performing comparison against independent estimates based on Argo and on the Clouds and the Earth’s Radiant energy System (CERES) measurements at the top of the atmosphere. This innovative study will be performed in coordination with initiatives focused on climate change studies and EEI as the Global Water and Energy Exchanges project (GEWEX) and the Climate and Ocean Variability, Predictability and Change project (CLIVAR) of WCRP.
MOOC ATMOSPHERE – EXPRO+ The aim of the activity is to develop an interactive MOOC on EO data from Space, fostering the use of EO data, for Atmosphere scientific studies, societal applications and services.Imperative Space (GovEd Ltd) (GB)Scienceatmosphere, atmosphere science cluster, scienceThe aim of the activity is to develop an interactive MOOC on EO data from Space, fostering the use of EO data, for Atmosphere scientific studies, societal applications and services.
MOOC-CRYO EXPRO+ Thie MOOC aims to provide an introduction to the latest EO methods and the next generation of satellite platforms to monitoring the dynamic behaviour of the Earth's cryosphere.Imperative Space (GovEd Ltd) (GB)Sciencecryosphere, scienceThie MOOC aims to provide an introduction to the latest EO methods and the next generation of satellite platforms to monitoring the dynamic behaviour of the Earth’s cryosphere.
MULTI-FLEX: towards a strategy for fluorescence monitoring at multiple scales within the context of the FLEX/S-3 tandem mission Living Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Marco Celesti.

The future FLEX/Sentinel-3 tandem mission will provide unique information on vegetation dynamics by exploiting Sun-induced fluorescence and reflectance at the [...]
UNIVERSITY OF MILANO BICOCCA (IT)Sciencebiosphere, carbon cycle, carbon science cluster, land, living planet fellows, science, Sentinel-3Living Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Marco Celesti. The future FLEX/Sentinel-3 tandem mission will provide unique information on vegetation dynamics by exploiting Sun-induced fluorescence and reflectance at the unprecedented spatial scale of 300m x 300m. This magnified view into the photosynthetic machinery will enhance our ability to face the actual and future challenges related to food production and to the interactions between natural ecosystems and the climatic and biogeochemical Earth system. Towards the FLEX mission, a lot of technical and scientific development is ongoing in order to build up the knowledge necessary to translate this spectral information into a meaningful and concrete way to retrieve photosynthesis from space. Within this context, the ATMOFLEX project started in February 2018 with the main aim of collecting Sentinel-3A measurements and collocated ground observations characterizing the state of the atmosphere for an extended period of time. As a core objective of ATMOFLEX, several sites have been instrumented with state-of-the-art hyperspectral spectroradiometers continuously measuring over the vegetation. Moreover, for a limited period of time, Sentinel-3B OLCI data in a FLEX-like configuration will be acquired, together with airborne acquisition with the FLEX airborne demonstrator (HyPlant). This will bring the unique opportunity of a multi-scale, multi-platform dataset acquired with fluorescence-capable devices, over a coherent time and geographical frame. This project is focused in exploiting the potential of fluorescence and reflectance to describe photosynthetic dynamics, by exploiting the dataset acquired within the ATMOFLEX project, developing a flexible tool built on physically based RTMs for retrieving information about vegetation biophysical/biochemical parameters and Sun-induced fluorescence, capable of dealing with multiple spectral and spatial resolution data. High level parameters retrieved from model inversion such as the fluorescence quantum efficiency will be compared with simpler fluorescence- and reflectance based metrics proposed to track vegetation photosynthetic dynamics or to correct for mixed pixel problems arising at the spatial scale offered by satellite observations. Apart from contributing to the development of an innovative approach for a coupled retrieval of fluorescence and vegetation parameters, the direct benefit of this approach would be to enrich the dataset of the ATMOFLEX sites with consistent data that can be further exploited at a later stage. Moreover, the multi-scale approach proposed in this project will improve our understanding of the link between punctual measurements performed on the ground and satellite observation in the context of the future FLEX cal/val activities, a fundamental step towards the creation of robust and reliable products out of the mission.
Ocean CIRculation from ocean COLour observations (CIRCOL) The monitoring of the oceanic surface currents is a major scientific and socio-economic challenge. Ocean currents represent one of the fundamental elements that modulate natural and anthropogenic processes at several different space and time [...]CNR-INSTITUTE OF MARINE SCIENCES-ISMAR (IT)Scienceclimate, ocean science cluster, oceans, permanently open call, scienceThe monitoring of the oceanic surface currents is a major scientific and socio-economic challenge. Ocean currents represent one of the fundamental elements that modulate natural and anthropogenic processes at several different space and time scales, from global climate change to local dispersal of tracers and pollutants, with relevant impacts on marine ecosystem services and maritime activities (e.g. optimization of the ship routes, maritime safety, coastal protection). An appropriate monitoring of the oceanic currents must rely on high frequency and high resolution observations of the global ocean, which are achieved using satellite measurements. At present, no satellite sensor is able to provide a direct measurement of the ocean currents – The indirect and synoptic retrieval of the large-scale geostrophic component of the sea-surface motion is given by satellite altimetry at a spatial (~100km) and temporal (~one week) resolution which is not sufficient for many applications, even more in semi-enclosed basins as the Mediterranean Sea where the most energetic variable signals are found at relatively small scales. In this context, the objective of the CIRCOL (Ocean Circulation from Ocean Colour Observations) project is to improve the retrieval of altimeter-derived currents in the Mediterranean Basin combining the largescale, altimeter-derived geostrophic currents with the high-resolution dynamical information contained in sequences of satellite-derived surface Chlorophyll (Chl) observations. The project will be implemented in two phases. During Phase 1, an Observing System Simulation Experiment (OSSE) based on CMEMS (Copernicus Marine Environment Monitoring Service) physical and biogeochemical models will be implemented to investigate the potentialities of the proposed approach for the improvement of the altimeter derived currents. During Phase 2, the optimal Chl-based reconstruction of the sea-surface currents will be implemented using the satellite-derived multi-sensor, L4 (gap-free) altimeter and sea-surface Chl for the Mediterranean Sea distributed by CMEMS. The resulting products will be validated against in-situ velocity measurements (drifting buoys, HF radar).  
OVALIE: Oceanic intrinsic Variability versus Atmospheric forced variabiLIty of sea level changE Living Planet Fellowship research project carried out by William Llovel.

Global mean sea level rise is one of the most direct consequences of actual global warming. Since the beginning of the 20th century, global mean sea level experiences an [...]
CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE (CNRS) (FR)Scienceliving planet fellows, ocean science cluster, oceans, scienceLiving Planet Fellowship research project carried out by William Llovel. Global mean sea level rise is one of the most direct consequences of actual global warming. Since the beginning of the 20th century, global mean sea level experiences an unabated increase of 1.1-1.9 mm.yr-1 recorded by tide gauges. Based on satellite altimetry and since 1993, global mean sea level rises at a higher rate of 3 mm.yr-1. This higher rate denotes a possible acceleration in this global rise. Actual global mean sea level rise mainly reflects global ocean warming (through thermal expansion of sea water) and land ice melt (from Greenland, Antarctica and mountain glaciers). Monitoring precisely these climate variables is mandatory to better understand processes at work under current global warming and to validate climate models used for projections. Careful investigations of these observations jointly with state-of-the-art numerical simulations have also helped for interpreting these changes and underlying mechanisms. Some of these joint observational/numerical investigations have demonstrated that the evolution of the ocean in the turbulent regions has a stochastic character even over interannual to multidecadal periods. This stochastic character of the ocean is known as intrinsic variability. This latter is poorly known in the global ocean despite its recently acknowledged contribution to the oceanic variability. Thus, this intrinsic variability may bias our interpretation of low-frequency variability of the ocean. One barely knows the temporal and spatial signature of the intrinsic variability, the precise footprints of this intrinsic variability as a function of depth and its signature on observations. Furthermore, we do not have enough knowledge on how this intrinsic variability contributes to the recent regional sea level change and its contributions such as temperature, salinity and mass changes. Therefore, the atmospheric evolution may force a variety of long-term oceanic variability. This means that the most accurate satellite/in situ observations can describe the atmospheric forced variability along with the chaotic ocean intrinsic changes. The OVALIE project proposes to scientifically investigate and partition the respective contribution of the atmospheric forced variability versus the oceanic intrinsic variability for the sea level observations (satellite data -based on Topex/Poseidon, Jason 1-2-3, ERS1, ERS2, ENVISAT, Altika and GRACE- and in situ measurements –based on Argo floats and other in situ measurements).
PHOTOPROXY: TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE FOR THE PHOTOSYNTHETIC-PROXY EXPERIMENT In few years from now, ESA’s BIOMASS and FLEX Earth Explorers satellite missions will open a new opportunity to enhance our knowledge of the global carbon cycle. In particular, the scientific exploitation of BIOMASS and FLEX in synergy with the [...]FORSCHUNGSZENTRUM JUELICH GMBH (DE)ScienceBiomass, biosphere, carbon cycle, carbon science cluster, FLEX, land, scienceIn few years from now, ESA’s BIOMASS and FLEX Earth Explorers satellite missions will open a new opportunity to enhance our knowledge of the global carbon cycle. In particular, the scientific exploitation of BIOMASS and FLEX in synergy with the Sentinel satellite series and other existing and future missions (e.g. CMOS, GEDI, NISAR, Tandem-X/L) will provide an unprecedented opportunity to better understand and characterize the different components of the carbon cycle and its dynamics. Preparing for the fast exploitation of this unique and unprecedented observational capacity, ESA has launched the Carbon Science Constellation Initiative. This initiative will be implemented through a cluster of different studies, research activities, campaigns and tool development efforts dedicated to support the scientific community to explore the potential synergies between different Earth Observation approaches and maximize the scientific impact of this unique set of sensors for carbon cycle research. With the PhotoProxy project, we address relevant open aspects that are related to the quantitative assessment of vegetation photosynthesis and vegetation stress from space. In the past years the fluorescence signal that is emitted from the core of the photosynthetic apparatus during photosynthetic energy conversion, has become the most promising indicator of actual photosynthetic rates. In 2012, the European Space Agency has selected the FLEX satellite mission to become ESA’s 8th Earth Explorer mission (Drusch et al. 2017). FLEX will be the first dedicated fluorescence mission that will provide global maps of both peak of the fluorescence signal on a high spatial resolution and relevant revisiting time. In addition to fluorescence, which can be measured across various scales ranging from the single leaf to the ecosystem (Rascher et al 2015, Wieneke et al 2018), in recent years, alternative approaches to the remote detection of photosynthetic carbon fluxes (photosynthesis or gross primary productivity, GPP) have been proposed. These approaches include reflectance-based measures by NIRv (Badgely et al. 2017) and CCI (Gamon et al. 2016), which are both related to pigment and structurally-based changes in vegetation [see Fig below as an example for the complementary information content of the different remote sensing measures]. Together, these remote sensing approaches offer a way to revolutionize our assessment of photosynthetic carbon uptake and vegetation health from space. However, major questions remain regarding the exact function of each of these signals and their relationship to each other. There are several indications that fluorescence may be the best remote sensing parameter to constrain predictions of CO₂ uptake rates, but we expect that a combination of the different measures will provide the best estimates of actual vegetation function. Thus with this activity we are working in an international consortium to address the following objectives: Test the applicability of the recently developed reflectance indices CCI and NIRv to track diurnal and seasonal vegetation dynamics. Perform a comparison of CCI, NIRv and solar induced chlorophyll fluorescence to better judge the quality of the different approaches to understand and model vegetation dynamic. Compare a benchmark dataset of those parameters to flux estimates from airborne and ground-based systems. Determine the scale-dependence (temporal and spatial) of the correlation between each optical metric and photosynthetic carbon uptake. Determine the factors that confound the interpretation of reflectance-based signals, and the conditions under which these occur. Determine the degree by which physiological regulation and structural adjustments influence each signal. Related publications Badgley G, Field C.B. and Berry J.A. (2017) Canopy near-infrared reflectance and terrestrial photosynthesis. Science Advances, 3; e1602244 Drusch M., Moreno J., Del Bello U., Franco R., Goulas Y., Huth A., Kraft S., Middleton E., Miglietta F., Mohammed G., Nedbal L., Rascher U., Schüttemeyer D. & Verhoef W. (2017) The FLuorescence EXplorer mission concept – ESA’s Earth Explorer 8. IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing, 55, 1273-1284 Gamon J.A., Huemmrich K.F., Wong C.Y.S, Ensminger I., Garrity S., Hollinger D.Y., Noormets A., Peñuelas J. (2016) Photosynthetic phenology of evergreen conifers. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 113 (46), 13087-13092 Rascher U., Alonso L., Burkart A., Cilia C., Cogliati S., Colombo R., Damm A., Drusch M., Guanter L., Hanus J., Hyvärinen T., Julitta T., Jussila J., Kataja K., Kokkalis P., Kraft S., Kraska T., Matveeva M., Moreno J., Muller O., Panigada C., Pikl M., Pinto F., Prey L., Pude R., Rossini M., Schickling A., Schurr U., Schüttemeyer D., Verrelst J. & Zemek F. (2015) Sun-induced fluorescence – a new probe of photosynthesis: First maps from the imaging spectrometer HyPlant. Global Change Biology, 21, 4673–4684 Wieneke S., Burkart, A., Cendrero-Mateo M. P., Julitta T., Rossini M., Schickling A., Schmidt M., Rascher U. (2018) Linking photosynthesis and sun-induced fluorescence at sub-daily to seasonal scales. Remote sensing of environment, 219, 247 – 258  
PHYSIOGLOB: Assessing the inter-annual physiological response of phytoplankton to global warming using long-term satellite observations Living Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Marco Bellacicco.
Phytoplankton is considered to be responsible for approximately 50% of the planetary primary production and is at the basis of the trophic chain. Large scale factors [...]
ITALIAN NATIONAL AGENCY FOR NEW TECHNOLOGIES, ENERGY AND SUSTAINABLE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (ENEA) (IT)Sciencecarbon cycle, carbon science cluster, climate, living planet fellows, ocean science cluster, oceans, scienceLiving Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Marco Bellacicco. Phytoplankton is considered to be responsible for approximately 50% of the planetary primary production and is at the basis of the trophic chain. Large scale factors such as climate, ocean circulation, and mostly anthropogenic activities, affect phytoplankton biomass and distribution. For all of these reasons, in the ocean, phytoplankton is defined as a sort of sentinel of changes in the ecosystem, because they rapidly respond to environment perturbations. Light, nutrients and temperature are the most important environmental variables that influence phytoplankton production. Phytoplankton cells respond to changes in light and nutrients with physiological strategies that enhance the efficiency of light capturing, photosynthetic capacity, growth and persistence. There are two different kinds of phytoplankton responses to light: photoadaptation and photoacclimation. The photoadaptation describes changes that might happen at genotype level, and are expected to occur at a long evolutionary time-scale. The photoacclimation is a cellular process that allows phytoplankton to change the intracellular chlorophyll-a concentration (Chl) in relation to environmental factors and it includes, among the others, regulation of the pigment amount and other components of the photosynthetic machinery. The temperature is the other main environmental agent that affects phytoplankton. It has been proved that ocean warming, mostly due to anthropogenic activities, causes an expansion of the low-Chl and low-productivity areas impacting strongly on marine ecosystem.  The most important and easily observable mechanism due to photoacclimation is variation of the photosynthetic pigment concentration (i.e. Chl) at the cellular scale which is thus can be observed and quantified using space-borne observations. Photoacclimation can be described in terms of variation of the ratio between chlorophyll-a and carbon (Chl:C ratio). Unfortunately, this process is currently overlooked by standard operational ocean colour algorithms used to retrieve information about both the phytoplankton standing stock and production. PhysioGlob wants to study the inter-annual physiological response of phytoplankton to global warming using long-term satellite observations (i.e. entire ESA OC-CCI time-series) through the Chl:C ratio. Phytoplankton carbon could be estimated from the particle backscattering (bbp, λ). One of the most used and applied algorithm for bbp (λ) is the Quasi Analytical Algorithm (QAA). We want to re-evaluate retrieval of bbp (λ) over the global ocean with the QAA, using field data of remote-sensing reflectance (Rrs) and inherent optical properties (IOP), and then compare phytoplankton carbon with Chl to estimate the physiological signal. In order to study the trend and oscillation of this process we: i) study the single time series in separate M-SSA analyses to evaluate similarities among the inter-annual variabilities of the Chl:Cphyto ratio, SST, and phytoplankton indices also highlighting possible differences; ii) proceed with a joint M-SSA analysis of the time series to better understand the spatio-temporal structure associated with inter-annual variability in the Chl:Cphyto ratio or phytoplankton indices and global ocean temperature field. This coupled analysis will also help in addressing the question to which extent the inter-annual oscillatory modes found in the Chl:Cphyto ratio or phytoplankton indices can be attributed to its response to inter-annual variability in SST field.
Pre-Operational Sentinel-3 snow and ice products (SICE) Land ice mass loss is the largest source of global sea level rise. Since 1992, two thirds of sea level contribution from land ice comes from the Arctic. Roughly half of Greenland ice sheet mass loss is from increased surface melting. The [...]GEOLOGICAL SURVEY OF DENMARK AND GREENLAND (DK)Sciencepermanently open call, scienceLand ice mass loss is the largest source of global sea level rise. Since 1992, two thirds of sea level contribution from land ice comes from the Arctic. Roughly half of Greenland ice sheet mass loss is from increased surface melting. The fraction from surface melting is even higher for smaller Arctic ice masses. The dominant energy source for melt is absorbed sunlight controlled by surface albedo. Bare ice and snow impurities, including biological effects present strong melt amplifiers through surface albedo. NASA MODIS sensors provide a climate data record (CDR) of snow extent and ice albedo since 2000 with the hosting Terra and Aqua missions now several years beyond design lifetime. The NOAA VIIRS sensor bridges the need for a satellite-derived albedo. However, Copernicus Sentinel-3 also fulfils the WMO essential climate variable mandate and for decades to come with the following additional advantages over VIIRS and MODIS: 1. The Sentinel-3 OLCI instrument offers higher (300 m) finest spatial resolution (SR). The finest SR for MODIS is 500 m. For VIIRS, the finest SR is 750m. 2. Sentinel-3 OLCI and SLSTR instruments offer more spectral coverage than MODIS or VIIRS, with the OLCI channel 21 being of particular value being located in the part of the spectrum most sensitive to snow grain size. Neither MODIS nor VIIRS measure in this spectral channel. 3. The algorithms proposed here are a full physics based retrievals vs often used empirical techniques. 4. The recently completed Scientific Exploitation of Operational Missions (SEOM) Sentinel-3 for Science (S34Sci) Land Study 1: Snow (S3 Snow) albedo algorithm outperforms NASA MODIS MOD10A1 product for dry clean snow. Main objectives / end goals of the study are: 1. deliver an automated open source processing chain using Sentinel-3 OLCI and SLSTR sensors to determine a dry/wet snow and clean/polluted bare ice spectral and broadband optical albedo 1 km daily product for land ice (glaciers, ice caps, ice sheet). 2. determine an optimal cloud clearing process for cryospheric application leveraging cloud ID insight from SEOM Sentinel-3 for Science, Land Study 1: Snow 3. test the above for application to sea ice (as opposed to land ice). 4. implement terrain correction for slopes under 4 degrees typical of more than 90% of land ice. Justification: terrain slope and azimuth has a strong impact on snow and ice anisotropic reflectance in optical wavelengths. Above 4 degrees remains in development elsewhere, and does not comprise a significant portion of the ice sheet. 5. validate the algorithms using field data. 6. deliver daily 15 March – 30 September 1km pan-Arctic glacierized region albedo products for years 2017 and 2018 via the PROMICE.org web portal. 7. demonstrate a pre-operational near-realtime (under 6 hours latency) capability for Sentinel-3A and Sentinel-3B for delivering spectral and broadband albedo.
PROMCOM: Production of lower tropospheric methane and carbon monoxide distributions through combined use of ESA Sentinel-5 Precursor shortwave infrared and IASI/CrIS thermal infrared satellite data Living Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Diane Knappett.
Global distributions of the methane (CH4) column average and carbon monoxide (CO) total column are observable by satellite shortwave infrared (SWIR) spectrometers through [...]
UK RESEARCH AND INNOVATION (GB)Scienceatmosphere, carbon cycle, carbon science cluster, living planet fellows, science, Sentinel-5P, TROPOMILiving Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Diane Knappett. Global distributions of the methane (CH4) column average and carbon monoxide (CO) total column are observable by satellite shortwave infrared (SWIR) spectrometers through detection of surface-reflected solar radiation. Observations by ENVISAT SCIAMACHY and GOSAT-TANSO have been exploited extensively to investigate biogenic, pyrogenic and anthropogenic sources and, in the case of methane, to quantify emissions through inverse modelling. ESA’s S5P offers a major advance on these preceding satellite SWIR spectrometers for identification and quantification of sources on finer scales by providing the first contiguous, daily global coverage at high spatial resolution (7 x 7 km). However, for inverse modelling of emission sources, height-resolved information would offer a major innovation on column information; particularly resolution of the lower tropospheric layer. This Fellowship proposes to develop and apply a scheme to achieve this by combining SWIR and TIR information on CH4 and CO.  RAL has developed a state-of-the-art scheme to retrieve global height-resolved methane distributions from thermal infrared (TIR) measurements in the Infrared Atmospheric Sounding Interferometer (IASI) 7.9 µm band (Siddans et al., 2017). While providing information on two independent vertical layers in the troposphere, sensitivity in this band decreases towards the ground, due to decreasing thermal contrast between the atmosphere and surface. A combined retrieval scheme exploiting in addition the high signal-to-noise information from S5P (SWIR/column) with that from IASI or CrIS (TIR/height-resolved) would enable lower tropospheric distributions of methane and CO to be resolved. Lower tropospheric concentrations are more closely-related to emission sources than are column measurements and inverse modelling of surface fluxes should be less sensitive to errors in representation of transport at higher altitudes; a limiting factor for current schemes.  As baseline, ESA S5P Level 2 (L2) products will be combined with retrievals from RAL’s IASI scheme; either as additional prior information for the IASI retrieval (L2-L1) or by combining retrieved L2 products (L2-L2). The IASI TIR scheme will then be modified and applied to CrIS (Suomi-NPP or NOAA-20), whose observations are separated by ~5 minutes from S5P compared to ~4 hours for IASI. Test data sets will be compared with analyses, models and surface measurements. Possibilities to improve on: (a) ESA’s S5P products, (b) the TIR scheme or (c) the SWIR-TIR scheme will then be assessed. Finally, the best performing scheme will be run to produce a fully-sampled 1-year CH4 and CO height-resolved dataset which will be made accessible to the science community.
RIDESAT – RIver flow monitoring and Discharge Estimation by integrating multiple SATellite data The RIDESAT Project (RIver flow monitoring and Discharge Estimation by integrating multiple SATellite data) aims at developing a new methodology for the joint exploitation of three sensors (altimeter, optical and thermal) for river flow [...]CNR-RESEARCH INSTITUTE FOR GEO-HYDROLOGICAL PROTECTION – IRPI (IT)Sciencealtimeter, permanently open call, science, water cycle and hydrologyThe RIDESAT Project (RIver flow monitoring and Discharge Estimation by integrating multiple SATellite data) aims at developing a new methodology for the joint exploitation of three sensors (altimeter, optical and thermal) for river flow monitoring and discharge estimation. Even if with a number of limitations, satellite radar altimetry over surface inland water has demonstrated its potential in the estimation of water levels useful for hydrological applications. Optical sensors, thanks to their frequent revisit time (nearly daily) and large spatial coverage, are recently used to support the evaluation of the river discharge variations. Despite the moderate spatial resolution of the optical data (about 250 – 300 m), their complementary with radar altimeter data enables to benefit of the different characteristics of the satellite sensors. In particular, the combination of radar (i.e. altimeters), optical and thermal instruments (i.e., multispectral sensors), allows for a continuous monitoring of the inland water and, hence, of the river discharge. The RIDESAT Project aims at: better understanding the use of optical and thermal sensors through the study of the physical meaning behind the process and their field of applicability; and developing a procedure of merging the three different satellite data through a physically based method that uses hydraulic variables obtained by satellites (e.g. water height, slope, width, flow velocity). The goal is to provide, for the first time, an accurate satellite-based river discharge product for small to large rivers. In order to test the ability of the different sensors to retrieve the river discharge at global scale, 10 pilot sites are selected all over the world, based on the availability of in situ measurements of hydraulic and morphological variables: water level, cross section, width, surface and bottom slope, flow velocity and discharge. The selection of pilot sites is also based on the climatic area (Tropical, Arid, Temperate, Cold), flow regime (glacial, nival, pluvial and tropical pluvial) and the size of the basin (large, medium and small). The developed procedure and the results obtained in the RIDESAT project will have an impact both on the scientific and the operational communities. In this respect, the estimation of the river discharge has a large interest in the hydrology community and an efficient and productive procedure can prove an advancement for the understanding and the knowledge of the hydrological processes. Users and stakeholders potentially interested include space agencies, government agencies, basin authorities, civil protection authorities and, more in general, all the organisations interested in the sustainable management of water for people and societies. This 12 month activity will be led by CNR-IRPI (IT) with the participation of DTU (DK).
S2 for Land and Water, Change Detection/Multi-temporal The project aims at defining the scientific methods and the related prototype algorithms for addressing three main challenges with the multispectral and multiresolution Sentinel 2 images: 1) change detection; 2) analysis of image time series; [...]UNIVERSITÀ DEGLI STUDI DI TRENTO (IT)Scienceland cover, scienceThe project aims at defining the scientific methods and the related prototype algorithms for addressing three main challenges with the multispectral and multiresolution Sentinel 2 images: 1) change detection; 2) analysis of image time series; and 3) updating of land-cover maps.
Satellite Oceanographic Datasets for Acidification (OceanSODA) Since the beginning of the industrial revolution humans have released approximately 500 billion metric tons of carbon into the atmosphere from burning fossil fuels, cement production and land-use changes. About 30% of this carbon dioxide (CO2) [...]UNIVERSITY OF EXETER (GB)Sciencecarbon cycle, carbon science cluster, climate, ocean science cluster, oceans, science, SMOS, SSTSince the beginning of the industrial revolution humans have released approximately 500 billion metric tons of carbon into the atmosphere from burning fossil fuels, cement production and land-use changes. About 30% of this carbon dioxide (CO2) has been taken up by the oceans, largely by the dissolution of this CO2 into seawater and subsequent reactions with the dissolved carbonate ions present in seawater. Anthropogenic emissions CO2 levelled out in 2016, but have since begun to increase again, rendering absolutely critical to monitor ocean carbon uptake. The long-term uptake of carbon dioxide by the oceans is reducing the ocean pH, a process commonly known as ocean acidification. The uptake is also altering the ocean chemistry and ecology, impacting marine ecosystems on which we rely. Recent work has begun to investigate the use of satellite Earth Observation, especially focusing on satellite sea surface salinity and sea surface temperature data, exploiting empirical methods to monitor surface-ocean carbonate chemistry. These techniques complement in situ approaches by enabling the first synoptic-scale observation-based assessments of the global oceans and are particularly well suited to monitoring large episodic events. The Satellite Oceanographic Datasets for Acidification (OceanSODA) project will further develop the use of satellite Earth Observation for studying and monitoring marine carbonate chemistry. Besides further developments of algorithms linking satellite variables with marine carbonate system parameters and the associated validation, a distinct focus will be on selected scientific studies and downstream impact assessment. This will include characterising and analysing how upwelling (of low pH waters) and compound events impact the carbonate system, and characterising the flow and impact on marine ecosystems of low pH waters from large river systems. The project will also work closely with the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and The Ocean Foundation, to support their work on coral reef conservation, the designation of marine protected areas and investigation of wild fisheries health and sustainable management.
SaTellite-based Run-off Evaluation And Mapping (STREAM) Water is at the centre of economic and social development; it is vital to maintain health, grow food, and manage the environment. As over half of the world’s potable water supply is extracted from rivers, either directly or from reservoirs, [...]CNR-RESEARCH INSTITUTE FOR GEO-HYDROLOGICAL PROTECTION – IRPI (IT)Scienceapplications, permanently open call, science, water cycle and hydrologyWater is at the centre of economic and social development; it is vital to maintain health, grow food, and manage the environment. As over half of the world’s potable water supply is extracted from rivers, either directly or from reservoirs, understanding the variability of the stored water on and below landmasses, i.e. the Total Runoff, is of primary importance. For this reason, the STREAM Project aims at developing an “observational” physically-based approach for deriving daily runoff estimates from satellite soil moisture (SM), precipitation (P) and terrestrial water storage anomalies (TWSA). The Project will support multiple operational and scientific applications (from flood warning systems to the understanding of water cycle). On the one hand, it will allow fine-tuning a simple modelling framework that adequately forced with satellite observations is potentially suitable for global runoff monitoring at daily time scale. On the other hand, it will allow increasing knowledge on the natural processes, human activities and on their interactions on the land. STREAM is also a feasibility study intended to answer the following research questions: To what extent satellite observations of precipitation, soil moisture and terrestrial water storage anomalies can provide reliable total runoff estimates? Is it possible to obtain a total runoff product with spatiotemporal resolutions beyond the one of GRACE and GRACE-FO measurements? Up to which spatiotemporal scales is this feasible and with which accuracy? The quality assessment of STREAM total runoff estimates will be pursued at multiple pilot basins across the world (5 large basins + multiple sub-basins) characterised by different physiographic/climatic features in order to highlight the role of climatic conditions/basin characteristics on the reliability of STREAM modelling framework and identify the optimal space/time scale that provides the best compromise between total runoff product accuracy and resolution. With respect to the state-of-the-art, the STREAM project proposes the following four innovative characteristics: The STREAM project will investigate the possibility to provide “model-independent” runoff estimates not relying on strong modelling assumptions; The STREAM runoff estimates will be derived solely from satellite observations; Differently from the available literature, the STREAM project will incorporate the fundamental role of soil moisture conditions in the runoff generation process; Beyond the use of off-the-shelf GRACE products (baseline), the STREAM project will explore finer spatial resolutions of sub-catchments by implementing tailored filters. Moreover, the STREAM project will contribute in understanding how limiting factors (e.g. freshwater availability) affect processes on the land surface and how this can adequately be represented in prediction models. The activity is led by CNR-IRPI with the participation of the Institute of Geodesy (GIS) at University of Stuttgart. The duration is of 12 months, until April 2020.  
SEN-ET: Sentinels for Evapotranspiration Satellite remote sensing of evapotranspiration is an essential part of the global observation system and provides inputs for agriculture, water resources management, weather forecasts, climate studies and many other applications. Easy access to [...]DHI GRAS A/S (DK)Sciencescience, water cycle and hydrologySatellite remote sensing of evapotranspiration is an essential part of the global observation system and provides inputs for agriculture, water resources management, weather forecasts, climate studies and many other applications. Easy access to reliable estimations of Evapotranspiration (ET) is considered a key requirement within these domains, and ET holds a vast potential to assist in the current attempts of meeting several of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), in particular SDG2 – zero hunger, SDG6 – clean water and sanitation and SDG13 – Climate action. In this context, the European Space Agency (ESA) is funding the Sentinels for Evapotranspiration (SEN-ET) project. The main objective of SEN-ET is to develop an optimal methodology for estimating ET at both fine (tens of meters) and coarse (kilometre) spatial scales, based on synergistic use of Sentinel 2 and Sentinel 3 satellites’ observations. The final methodology will be implemented as an open source software available freely to all users. For further details, see the Project page or contact the consortium.
Sentinel Hub for Network of Resources Sentinel Hub services are operational services running on several platforms (AWS EU-Frankfurt, AWS US-West, Creodias, Onda and Mundi web services), providing seamless access to various satellite missions over web service API. They are used by [...]SINERGISE LTD. (SI)Digital Platform Servicespermanently open call, platforms, scienceSentinel Hub services are operational services running on several platforms (AWS EU-Frankfurt, AWS US-West, Creodias, Onda and Mundi web services), providing seamless access to various satellite missions over web service API. They are used by thousands of users (free and payable) all over the world and two million requests are processed on average every single day. Two freely accessible web applications are operated within Sentinel Hub suite – Sentinel Playground, easy-to-use Google Maps-like web client and EO Browser providing a more advanced access to various data-sets supported by Sentinel Hub services. Various advanced features are available as well – export to GeoTiff, statistical analysis, time-lapse generation, custom scripting, etc. This project foresees an upgrade Sentinel Hub services to make them ready for integration in Network of Resources, including: • User management (authentication and integration with EDUGAIN to make the access available to tens of thousands of Open Science Cloud users without additional registration) • Integration of Sentinel Hub services on the back-end level (to increase system performance, availability, and efficiently exploit separate deployments) • Security • Data fusion to make it possible to combine data from different missions in the same custom script, also adding further attributes (sun angle, quality, projections, etc..) • Upgrade of Python libraries and Web clients to support all above-mentioned new features
Sentinel-1 for Surface Soil Moisture Develop, implement and test soil moisture retrieval methods using Sentinel-1 dataThe C-band Sentinel-1 (S-1) European Radar Observatory, with its two satellites (S-1A & B), is the only operating SAR mission with monitoring capabilities, [...]CNR-RESEARCH INSTITUTE FOR GEO-HYDROLOGICAL PROTECTION – IRPI (IT)Sciencescience, water cycle and hydrologyDevelop, implement and test soil moisture retrieval methods using Sentinel-1 dataThe C-band Sentinel-1 (S-1) European Radar Observatory, with its two satellites (S-1A & B), is the only operating SAR mission with monitoring capabilities, frequent revisit and large geographical coverage that will guarantee data continuity over the next decades. S-1 with its advanced observational capabilities opens new perspectives to SAR derived near surface soil moisture (SSM) products as, for the first time ever, they may attract a real interest in a wide user community and stimulate a synergistic interaction with SSM products at low resolution.The scope of the two-year Exploit-S-1 project is to demonstrate the capabilities of the S-1 mission to support systematic SSM product generation at high resolution (e.g. 500m-1000m) and at regional/continental scale.A suite of SSM retrieval methods will be developed, implemented and validated using S-1 data. The methods will be based on previous research into C-band soil moisture retrieval and will be selected from the great wealth of approaches proposed in the literature and tailored to S-1 data. The emphasis will be on implementing and comparing algorithms presenting the most promising trade-off among robustness, retrieval accuracy and potential matching with the requirements of different applications (e.g. Numerical Weather Prediction, hydrological forecasting, drought events …) in terms of accuracy, resolution and product frequency. In addition, the suitability of the algorithms to fully exploit the S-1 observational assets (e.g., dual polarization, spatial/temporal resolution, radiometric accuracy) in order to deliver a large scale mapping will be considered.A key component of Exploit-S-1 will be the validation activity that will include local and regional scale sites (e.g. the Mediterranean basin) in order to better assess the potential for pre-operational and operational soil moisture products and services.A further pivotal element of Exploit-S-1 will be the assessment of the optimal pre-processing of S-1 time series for SSM retrieval. This will also have the outreaching effect of consolidating standards for the generation of S-1 multi-temporal products that are well suited for other S-1 retrieval studies.
Sentinel-2 Global Land Cover This activity aims at setting up a solid scientific basis for the development of advance land cover classification strategies to exploit the new capabilities of Sentinel-2 in view of generating future global land cover mapThis project will focus [...]SPACE RESEARCH CENTRE, POLISH ACADEMY OF SCIENCES (PL)Scienceland cover, scienceThis activity aims at setting up a solid scientific basis for the development of advance land cover classification strategies to exploit the new capabilities of Sentinel-2 in view of generating future global land cover mapThis project will focus on the classification of Sentinel imagery for the purpose of producing a global land cover map. The first part of this study is an extensive review of the currently available Global Land Cover (GLC) maps and databases. This review, together with feedback from the community, will influence the choices in algorithms and image processing methodologies tested within the scope of this study. The second and third parts of the study are testing of the land-cover classification methodologies and validation of those methods respectively in order to produce not only the highest quality maps, e.g. accuracy >80%, but also harmonised with current GLC products. In order to achieve this complex goal, many different tests of object-oriented as well as pixel based classification approaches will be made. In parallel, advanced data collection strategies for training and validation will be investigated. While the majority of the applied land-cover classification techniques will be based on optical imagery acquired by Sentinel-2 (S2), the team understands that globally this challenge can be supported by the Sentinel-1 SAR data. The different approaches will be benchmarked in order to understand the influence of a variety of factors on the performance of the proposed methods. Factors will include feature relevancy, the impact of atmospheric correction, the selected minimal mapping unit, seasonal changes, the incompleteness of training data, image mosaicking, and multi-temporal S2 data. The final part of the project will be to make recommendations based on the research for future S2 based GLC products.
Sentinel-2 Radiometry Validation Development and inter-comparison of algorithms for validating the radiometry of Sentinel-2 Level-1 products.According to the definition used by the Working Group on Calibration and Validation (WGCV) of the international Committee on Earth [...]ACRI-ST S.A.S. (FR)SciencescienceDevelopment and inter-comparison of algorithms for validating the radiometry of Sentinel-2 Level-1 products.According to the definition used by the Working Group on Calibration and Validation (WGCV) of the international Committee on Earth Observation Satellites (CEOS), validation is the process of assessing, by independent means, the quality of the data products derived from the system outputs. This two-year project pursues two main objectives:The development of four algorithms to validate the radiometry of Sentinel-2 products.The inter-comparison of the results obtained with these methods and the ones from other entities.
Sentinel-3 for Science, Land Study 1: Snow This SEOM study is to develop, implement and validate algorithms for deriving several key snow parameters from Sentinel 3 optical satellite data, appropriate for addressing ESA’s Cryosphere challenge (Seasonal snow, lake/river ice and land ice, [...]GEOLOGICAL SURVEY OF DENMARK AND GREENLAND (DK)Sciencecryosphere, polar science cluster, scienceThis SEOM study is to develop, implement and validate algorithms for deriving several key snow parameters from Sentinel 3 optical satellite data, appropriate for addressing ESA’s Cryosphere challenge (Seasonal snow, lake/river ice and land ice, their effect on the climate system, water resources, energy and carbon cycles: the representation of terrestrial cryosphere in land surface, atmosphere and climate models). This study takes a step toward achieving GCOS snow observation goals, effectively linking snow cover and albedo essential climate variables (ECVs) while developing capacity to extend snow climate data records (CDRs). This work aims to assimilate satellite optical data in a snow model by pushing data assimilation capabilities to the near real time frame and thus serving operational models to improve hydrological and weather forecasting skill and e.g. flood and avalanche hazard management.
Sentinel-3 Primary Production over Land (TerrA-P) Gross primary production (GPP) and terrestrial net primary production (NPP) are fundamental quantities in the global carbon cycle, and for the production of food, fibre and biomass for human use. This project aims at exploiting Sentinel-3 data [...]VLAAMSE INSTELLING VOOR TECHNOLOGISCH ONDERZOEK VITO (BE)Sciencebiosphere, carbon cycle, carbon science cluster, land, science, Sentinel-3Gross primary production (GPP) and terrestrial net primary production (NPP) are fundamental quantities in the global carbon cycle, and for the production of food, fibre and biomass for human use. This project aims at exploiting Sentinel-3 data to develop and validate a productive model, consistent across different regions and ecosystems.The objective of the TerrA-P project is to define, implement and validate a model to derive information on the vegetation productivity based on data from MERIS and Sentinel-3. To reach this goal, knowledge and expertise from three domains need to be combined. These domains are: the ecophysiology of the plants which is expressed in the productivity model, the EO data sets that can be used as input for this model, and the in-situ data that allow the validation of the model outcome using EO-input data.
SENTINEL-3 TANDEM FOR CLIMATE (S3TC) EXPRO+ After 2 years in orbit, the Sentinel-3A satellite from the Copernicus program was joined by Sentinel-3B. During the first six months of the mission, the two satellites will fly in close formation. Sentinel-3A and Sentinel-3B observe the same [...]ACRI-ST S.A.S. (FR)Scienceclimate, ocean science cluster, science, Sentinel-3After 2 years in orbit, the Sentinel-3A satellite from the Copernicus program was joined by Sentinel-3B. During the first six months of the mission, the two satellites will fly in close formation. Sentinel-3A and Sentinel-3B observe the same place on the Earth within 30 seconds. This so-called tandem phase makes it possible to inter-calibrate very accurately the two satellites in order to ensure that their measurements are consistent. In the long run, this will help to build reliable measurement records to study climate change effects such as sea level rise, increase of ocean surface temperature, or variations in the phyto-plankton distribution. The Sentinel-3 Tandem for Climate is an ESA-financed study which aims at a detailed understanding of the inter-satellite discrepancies, differences and uncertainties using data acquired during the Tandem phase. The study is performed by a consortium of companies and research institutes led by ACRI-ST.
SENTINEL-5P+ INNOVATION The Sentinel-5p+ Innovation activity is motivated by potential novel scientific developments and applications that may emerge from the exploitation of the Copernicus Sentinel-5p mission data. This satellite mission is dedicated to the precise [...]ESA EOP-SDS initiative (IT)Scienceapplications, atmosphere, atmosphere science cluster, science, Sentinel-5PThe Sentinel-5p+ Innovation activity is motivated by potential novel scientific developments and applications that may emerge from the exploitation of the Copernicus Sentinel-5p mission data. This satellite mission is dedicated to the precise monitoring of the Earth’s atmosphere with a highlight on tropospheric composition. The Sentinel-5p spacecraft was launched in October 2017, where fills the gap from the past SCanning Imaging Absorption SpectroMeter for Atmospheric CHartographY (SCIAMACHY) instrument on ESA’s Envisat satellite, via the yet active Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI) carried on NASA’s Aura mission to the future Sentinel-5 The overarching objectives of this Sentinel-5p+ Innovation project are: To develop a solid scientific basis for the application of Sentinel-5p data within the context of novel scientific and operational applications; To develop a number of novel products and retrieval methods that exploit the potential of the Sentinel-5p mission’s capabilities beyond its primary objectives; To define strategic actions for fostering a transition of the target methods and models developed in this project from research to operational activities; To maximise the scientific return and benefits from the Sentinel-5p mission. The Sentinel-5p+ Innovation project addresses seven themes related to atmospheric composition and ocean colour: Theme 1: Glyoxal (CHOCHO) Theme 2: Chlorine Dioxide (OClO) Theme 3: Water Vapour Isotopologues (H2O-ISO) Theme 4: Sulphur dioxide layer height (SO2-LH) Theme 5: Aerosol Optical Depth (AOD) and Bidirectional Reflectance Distribution Function (BRDF) Theme 6: Solar Induced Chlorophyll Fluorescence (SIF) Theme 7: Ocean colour (OC) The individual project themes have been kicked-off end June/beginning of July 2019 and will run for 24 months.  
SENTINEL-5P+ INNOVATION – AEROSOL OPTICAL DEPTH (AOD) AND BIDIRECTIONAL REFLECTANCE DISTRIBUTION FUNCTION (BRDF) The capability of Sentinel-5p for aerosol monitoring is currently not used to its full potential. However, satellite observations in the spectral range of approximately 340 - 400 nm are known to have unique sensitivity to elevation and [...]GRASP-SAS (FR)Scienceatmosphere, atmosphere science cluster, science, Sentinel-5P, TROPOMIThe capability of Sentinel-5p for aerosol monitoring is currently not used to its full potential. However, satellite observations in the spectral range of approximately 340 – 400 nm are known to have unique sensitivity to elevation and absorption of tropospheric aerosols. Traditionally, this sensitivity is used in many ozone monitoring instruments such as TOMS, GOME-1, SCIAMACHY, OMI and GOME-2 for deriving a UV Aerosol Index (UVAI) that provides valuable qualitative information on aerosol distribution. However, the UVAI does not have an explicit geophysical quantitative meaning and, therefore, it is not fully appropriate for utilization in the validation of aerosol transport models and other climate applications. The reflectivity of the Earth’s surface is an important input parameter for many satellite retrievals of atmospheric composition. Some examples are e.g the retrieval of trace gases such as O3, NO2, BrO, CH2O, H2O, CO2, CO, and CH4, and of cloud information and aerosol optical depth (AOD). Recent developments in atmospheric remote sensing have focused strongly on deriving and implementing angular-dependent surface BRDF information (as opposed to using traditional, non-directional Lambertian surface reflectivity information), and on obtaining this information on a much higher spatial resolution than before. The S5P+I AOD/BRDF project is focused on the aerosol and surface reflectance characterisation using capabilities of Sentinel-5p (TROPOMI) measurements. As such one objective of the project is to achieve quantitative characterization of aerosol properties from Sentinel-5p. Specifically, the aim is to develop the algorithm capable to provide Aerosol Optical Depth (AOD), i.e. aerosol load in the atmosphere as well as to provide information on absorption and the type of the aerosol. Next to this, another objective is the development of a spectral surface BRDF product.
SENTINEL-5P+ INNOVATION – GLYRETRO (GLYoxal Retrievals from TROPOMI) Glyoxal is the most abundant dicarbonyl present in our atmosphere and is directly emitted from biomass burning and also results from the oxidation of precursor non-methane volatile organic compounds (NMVOC). It is currently estimated that about [...]BELGIAN INSTITUTE OF SPACE AERONOMY (BIRA-IASB) (BE)Scienceapplications, atmosphere, atmosphere science cluster, science, Sentinel-5P, TROPOMIGlyoxal is the most abundant dicarbonyl present in our atmosphere and is directly emitted from biomass burning and also results from the oxidation of precursor non-methane volatile organic compounds (NMVOC). It is currently estimated that about 70% of its production originate from natural sources and fires, while the remaining 30% come from human activities. With a short lifetime (~3 hours), elevated glyoxal concentrations are observed near emission sources. Measurements of atmospheric glyoxal concentrations therefore provide quantitative information on VOC emission and can help to better assess the quality of current inventories. In addition, glyoxal is also known to contribute significantly to the total budget of secondary organic aerosols, which impact both air quality and climate forcing. The GLYRETRO (GLYoxal Retrievals from TROPOMI) activity is one of the seven themes from the ESA S5p innovation (S5p+I) project, which aims at further exploiting the capability of the S5p/TROPOMI instrument with the development of a number of new scientific products. The GLYRETRO project, proposed by both the Royal Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy and the Institute of Environmental Physics at the University of Bremen, has been successfully kicked-off on July, 1st 2019 and will last two years. The objectives are manifold and can be listed as To develop a scientific glyoxal (CHOCHO) tropospheric column product To collect independent data sets in order to validate the satellite observations To pave the way towards an operationalization of the developed S5p glyoxal product To demonstrate the added-value of the S5p glyoxal product for the user community. For more information on the project, contact Christophe Lerot (christophe.lerot at aeronomie.be).
SENTINEL-5P+ INNOVATION – SO2 Layer Height Project The ESA Sentinel-5p+ Innovation project (S5p+I) has been initiated to develop novel scientific and operational applications, products and retrieval methods that exploit the potential of the Sentinel-5p mission’s capabilities beyond its primary [...]DLR – GERMAN AEROSPACE CENTER (DE)Scienceapplications, atmosphere, atmosphere science cluster, science, Sentinel-5P, TROPOMIThe ESA Sentinel-5p+ Innovation project (S5p+I) has been initiated to develop novel scientific and operational applications, products and retrieval methods that exploit the potential of the Sentinel-5p mission’s capabilities beyond its primary objective. Accurate determination of the location, height and loading of SO2 plumes emitted by volcanic eruptions is essential for aviation safety. The SO2 layer height is furthermore one of the most critical parameters that determine the impact on the climate. The height of volcanic ash columns are often estimated by local observers with mostly unknown accuracy. The plume height can also be determined using aircraft, ground-based radar or LIDAR but such observations are often not available and many volcanic eruptions in remote areas remain not observed. In addition, volcanic plumes containing SO2 but not ash cannot be seen directly. SO2 in the atmosphere has important impacts on chemistry and climate at both local and global levels. Natural sources account for ~30% of SO2 emissions. Next to contributions from volcanic activity, these include emissions from marine phytoplankton and a small contribution from soil and vegetation decay. However, by far the largest contributions in global SO2 production are from anthropogenic sources. These account for the remaining 70% of global emissions and primarily relate to fossil fuel burning, with smaller contributions from smelting and biomass burning. While satellite instruments, in principle, provide global products e.g. from SEVIRI (Second Generation Spin-stabilised Enhanced Visible and Infra-Red Imager) or AIRS (Atmospheric Infra-Red Sounder), they have no or little vertical resolution. SO2 height retrievals have been developed for IR sensors like the scanning IASI (Infrared Atmospheric Sounding Interferometer). This can provide information on the vertical distribution of SO2 in a volcanic plume but only at a horizontal resolution of 12 km. Although retrievals of SO2 plume height have been carried out using satellite UV backscatter measurements from e.g. OMI (Ozone Monitoring Instrument) or GOME-2, until now such algorithms are up to now very time-consuming, since the spectral information content and its characterization require computationally demanding radiative transfer modelling. Due to the high spatial resolution of TROPOMI (Tropospheric Ozone Measurement Instrument) aboard S5p(Sentinel-5p) and consequent large amount of data, an SO2 layer height algorithm has to be very fast. The SO2 Layer Height (SO2LH) theme is dedicated to the generation of an SO2 layer height product for Sentinel-5p taking into account data production timeliness requirements. The S5p+I: SO2LH project is funded by the European Space Agency ESA The coordination of the project is under the responsibility of the German Aerospace Center DLR. The objectives of the SO2 LH project are: • Development of an SO2 layer height product for Sentinel-5p; • Assessment of the performance of the new algorithm specifically with respect to timeliness requirements in operational processing frameworks; • Assessment of the applicability of various algorithms based on e.g. EISF or a LUT approach; • Assessment of the errors in the presence of absorbing and non-absorbing aerosols; • Assessment of retrieval results based on observation conditions, e.g. inhomogeneous scene; • Demonstration of the new retrieval on a number of cases of volcanic eruptions, including intercomparisons to SO2 height levels for volcanic eruptions with available OMI and GOME2 SO2 height level retrievals; • Discussion on how the effect of layer altitude change can be distinguished from a change of vertical column; • Assessment of the contribution of the new LH algorithm to the independent operational SO2 column retrieval • Discussion of mechanisms of adding the LH product to the SO2 operational column product (e.g. inclusion into the existing SO2 total column product), or justification for a standalone product. The S5P+I: SO2LH project had its official kick-off on 3 July 2019 The project duration is 24 month
SENTINEL-5P+ INNOVATION – WATER VAPOUR ISOTOPOLOGUES (H2O-ISO) Atmospheric moisture is a key factor for the redistribution of heat in the atmosphere and there is strong coupling between atmospheric circulation and moisture pathways which is responsible for most climate feedback mechanisms. Water [...]UNIVERSITY OF LEICESTER (GB)Scienceapplications, atmosphere, atmosphere science cluster, science, Sentinel-5PAtmospheric moisture is a key factor for the redistribution of heat in the atmosphere and there is strong coupling between atmospheric circulation and moisture pathways which is responsible for most climate feedback mechanisms. Water isotopologues can make a unique contribution for better understanding this coupling. In recent years, water vapour isotopologue observations from satellites have become available from thermal nadir infrared measurements (TES, AIRS, IASI) which are sensitive above the boundary layer and from shortwave-infrared (SWIR) sensors (GOSAT, SCIAMACHY) that provide column averaged concentrations including sensitivity to the boundary layer. Sentinel 5P (S5P) measures SWIR radiance spectra that allow retrieval of water isotopologue columns but with much improved spatial and temporal coverage compared to other SWIR sensors thus promising an unique dataset with larger potential for scientific and operational applications. The aim of this proposal is to develop and evaluate a prototype dataset from Sentinel 5P for water isotopologues. This will be addressed by a team of experts from University of Leicester, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology and University of Bergen bringing together expertise in atmospheric measurement (EO and in-situ), and modelling with scientific end-users. Objectives: During this project we will demonstrate the feasibility of measuring stable water isotopologues for S5P, specifically ratios of HDO/H2O by: Optimizing the retrieval method making use of the University of Leicester Full Physics (UoL-FP) retrieval algorithm. Examining and characterize the retrieval performance by validation of retrieved waterisotopologues against reference data sets (MUSICA NDACC data and TCCON) and satellite data from IASI and GOSAT. Assess the impact of the S5P datasets using two different models for defined regions of interest. The findings and recommendations of this project will be delivered through a scientific roadmap, in order to further develop the methods and their application including a transition to operational activities. This will benefit from the strong links of the team with relevant international activities, projects and initiatives.
SENTINEL-5P+ INNOVATION CHLORINE DIOXIDE (OCLO) The S5PI+ OClO project is one of the seven themes of ESA's Sentinel-5p+ Innovation activity, which aims at developing products for the TROPOMI instrument on the Sentinel-5 Precursor satellite which are not yet part of the operational processor. [...]UNIVERSITAT BREMEN (DE)Scienceatmosphere, atmosphere science cluster, science, Sentinel-5P, TROPOMIThe S5PI+ OClO project is one of the seven themes of ESA’s Sentinel-5p+ Innovation activity, which aims at developing products for the TROPOMI instrument on the Sentinel-5 Precursor satellite which are not yet part of the operational processor. The Copernicus Sentinel-5P satellite was launched in October 2017 and provides operational data since July 2018. This mission is intended as a gap-filler between the time series of the former instruments GOME and SCIAMACHY, the still operating OMI and the future Copernicus S5 instruments. The stratospheric ozone layer plays an important role for life on Earth as it absorbs a large part of the harmful UV radiation coming from the sun. The amount and vertical distribution of ozone in the stratosphere is determined by transport and by an equilibrium between chemical ozone production on the one hand and catalytic ozone destruction cycles on the other hand. Anthropogenic emissions of long-lived halogen containing substances such as CFCs and halons have disturbed this equilibrium as additional reactive halogens have been released in the stratosphere. This lead to global reductions in ozone columns and the annual appearance of the ozone hole over Antarcica in austral winter / spring. Strong ozone depleteion is also observed in Arctic winter / spring but only in years where the stratosphere is cold enough to facilitate formation of Polar Stratospheric Clouds (PSCs). As a reaction on the rapid loss of stratospheric ozone, the Montreal Protocol was signed in 1987, phasing out the emissions of many long-lived halogen containing substances. Several amendments to this protocol have in the last decades lead to further and more rapid decreases in emissions of of ozone depleting substances, and stratospheric halogen levels are already decreasing. Because of the long lifetimes of the emitted substances, it is expected that return to the ozone levels of the 1980s will take at least until 2050. Stratospheric chlorine activation can be monitored directly by measuring ClO with microwave radiometry. In the UV/visible spectral range, the OClO molecule can be retrieved as it has a structured absorption spectrum. As the only known formation of OClO is by reaction of ClO and BrO, the amounts of OClO are proportional to the concentrations of these two species. With BrO concentrations being much less variable than those of ClO, OClO can be used as a quantitative measure of chlorine activation at least at solar zenith angles around twilight. Retrievals of OClO have been performed for all UV/vis heritage instruments (GOME, SCIAMACHY, GOME2, OMI) and the S5P OClO product will act as a continuation of these timeseries. Atmospheric profiles of OClO have also been retrieved from SCIAMACHY, OSIRIS and GOMOS measurements, providing additional information on the vertical distribution of OClO. For the validation of the S5P OClO product, ground-based observations of OClO from instruments in the NDACC network can be used.
SENTINEL-5P+ INNOVATION OCEAN COLOUR (S5P+-I-OC) The S5P+I-OC project will explore the capacity of the Sentinel-5p TROPOMI data to provide novel Ocean Colour (OC) products. More specifically, the objectives of this S5P+ Innovation activity are to:

develop a solid scientific basis for the [...]
ALFRED WEGENER INSTITUTE (DE)Scienceatmosphere science cluster, carbon cycle, carbon science cluster, ocean science cluster, oceans, science, Sentinel-3, Sentinel-5P, TROPOMIThe S5P+I-OC project will explore the capacity of the Sentinel-5p TROPOMI data to provide novel Ocean Colour (OC) products. More specifically, the objectives of this S5P+ Innovation activity are to: develop a solid scientific basis for the application of S5P data within the context of novel scientific and operational OC products applications; assess existing algorithms which have been used for OC product retrievals from SCanning Imaging Absorption Spectro-Meter for Atmospheric CHartographY (SCIAMACHY), Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI) and Global Ozone Monitoring Experiment (GOME-2); develop novel OC products and retrieval methods that exploit the potential of the S5P mission’s capabilities beyond its primary objectives, in particular, the chlorophyll-a concentration (CHL) of important phytoplankton groups (PFT-CHL), the underwater light attenuation coefficients (Kd) for the ultraviolet (UV) and the blue spectral region separately (KdUV, KdBlue), and the sun-induced marine chlorophyll-a fluorescence signal (SIF-marine) from TROPOMI S5P level-1 data; explore the potential of the UV range of S5P for ocean biology; use complementary products from Sentinel-3 (S3) and S5P for exploring the UV measurements of TROPOMI for assessing sources of coloured dissolved organic matter (CDOM) and the amount of UV-absorbing pigments in the ocean; validate with established reference in situ datasets and perform intercomparison to other satellite OC data; define strategic actions for fostering a transition of the methods from research to operational activities; maximize the scientific return and benefits from the S5P mission for surface ocean research and services (e.g. CMEMS) by assessing the synergies with other satellite sensors, in particular explore the synergistic use of S5P and S3.
SENTINEL-5P+ INNOVATION SOLAR INDUCED CHLOROPHYLL FLUORESCENCE (SIF) The ESA –TROPOSIF project is one of the seven themes from the Sentinel-5p+ Innovation (S5p+I)  activity funded by ESA, which aims at developing novel scientific products / retrieval methods from the data acquired by the TROPOMI (TROPOspheric [...]NOVELTIS SAS (FR)Scienceatmosphere science cluster, biosphere, carbon cycle, carbon science cluster, land, science, Sentinel-5P, TROPOMIThe ESA –TROPOSIF project is one of the seven themes from the Sentinel-5p+ Innovation (S5p+I)  activity funded by ESA, which aims at developing novel scientific products / retrieval methods from the data acquired by the TROPOMI (TROPOspheric Monitoring Instrument) instrument aboard the Copernicus Sentinel-5 Precursor mission launched in October 2017. Although the Sentinel-5P mission was designed to monitor the Earth’s atmosphere, TROPOMI’s spectral and radiometric performance enable to also monitor terrestrial Solar Induced Fluorescence (SIF) with an unprecedented spatial and temporal resolution. What is SIF? Solar induced chlorophyll fluorescence (SIF) is an electromagnetic signal emitted by the chlorophyll a of assimilating plants: part of the energy absorbed by chlorophyll a is not used for photosynthesis, but emitted at longer wavelengths as a two-peak spectrum roughly covering the 650–850 nm spectral range. The SIF signal responds instantaneously to perturbations in environmental conditions such as light and water stress, which makes it a direct proxy for photosynthetic activity. However, SIF emission constitutes only a small fraction (typically 0.5%-2%) of the radiance at the top of the canopy, which is mostly composed of reflected sunlight, and its estimation from space-borne spectrometers requires both high spectral resolution and advanced retrieval schemes. Why should we care about SIF? Over the last few years, solar-induced chlorophyll fluorescence (SIF) observations from space have emerged as a promising resource for evaluating the spatio-temporal distribution of gross carbon uptake (GPP = gross primary productivitt) by terrestrial ecosystems, the characterization of which still remains uncertain to date. In the particular case of climate studies, our ability to anticipate the evolution of net and gross carbon fluxes over the globe under a changing climate largely relies on global terrestrial biosphere models (TBMs). Their parameterization remains largely uncertain and it is anticipated that satellite SIF products will provide a significant constraint (reduction in uncertainty) on the projections of the terrestrial carbon updake.
SEOM Sen2Coral Sen2Coral aims to develop and validate new algorithms relevant for coral reef monitoring based on Sentinel-2 observations, including benthic mapping, coral reef health and mortality as well as bathymetry. The activity will develop open source [...]ARGANS LIMITED (GB)Scienceecosystems/vegetation, science, water resourcesSen2Coral aims to develop and validate new algorithms relevant for coral reef monitoring based on Sentinel-2 observations, including benthic mapping, coral reef health and mortality as well as bathymetry. The activity will develop open source algorithms  for mapping (habitat, bathymetry, and water quality) and detection change for coral reef health assessment and monitoring as well as a roadmap to a global coral reef observatory based on the scientific exploitation and validation of the Sentinel-2 Multispectral Instrument (MSI).
SHRED: Sentinel-1 for High REsolution monitoring of vegetation Dynamics Living Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Mariette Vreugdenhil.

Through its role in the global water-, carbon- and energy cycles, vegetation is a key control in land surface processes and land-atmosphere interactions. [...]
TECHNISCHE UNIVERSITAT WIEN (TU WIEN) (AT)Sciencebiosphere, carbon cycle, carbon science cluster, land, living planet fellows, science, Sentinel-1, SMOSLiving Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Mariette Vreugdenhil. Through its role in the global water-, carbon- and energy cycles, vegetation is a key control in land surface processes and land-atmosphere interactions. Vegetation is strongly affected by variability in climate drivers like temperature, radiation and water availability. Vegetation phenology, the timing of vegetation phases, is a sensitive indicator of terrestrial ecosystem response to climate change, and changes herein, e.g. lengthening of the growing season, can influence terrestrial carbon uptake and thus, depending on the net effect, either exacerbate or dampen global warming. The effect of moisture availability on vegetation dynamics is still debated. While some studies found no relation between precipitation and vegetation dynamics when using visible-infrared (VI) remote sensing (RS), others attributed reductions in vegetation water, productivity and carbon uptake to droughts. Thus, the effects of water availability on vegetation dynamics and the subsequent feedbacks are still not fully understood. Nevertheless, understanding these effects are essential since droughts are expected to become more frequent with global warming and demand of agricultural food production increases to ensure global food security. To identify the processes involved in interactions between climate drivers and vegetation dynamics long-term high-resolution Earth Observation (EO) datasets are needed. Microwave RS, with the advantage that it’s not hindered by clouds, smoke or illumination, provides complementary information on vegetation compared to VI RS. Vegetation Optical Depth (VOD), which describes the attenuation of microwave radiance by vegetation, is sensitive to the water content in the above ground biomass. Global VOD datasets are available from active and passive microwave observations, and have been successfully used to study trends and inter-annual variability in vegetation. However, to date the use of microwave observations has always been a trade-off between coarse spatial and high temporal resolution. With the Copernicus Sentinel-1 series, for the first time high temporal and spatial resolution backscatter time series have become available. Studies have demonstrated the sensitivity of the VH/VV Cross Ratio (CR) to vegetation. Here I will optimally combine the Sentinel-1 CR with VOD retrieved from EEUMETSAT Metop ASCAT backscatter observations to develop a global 1 km VOD product. The novel high-resolution VOD will be evaluated using Leaf Area Index from Copernicus Global Land Service (CGLS), ESA’s SMOS VOD and VOD from AMSR2. Subsequently, I will use novel machine learning approaches to quantify the impact of water availability on vegetation dynamics. The high-resolution VOD will allow the analysis of variations in impact of water availability on vegetation dynamics between land cover types, e.g. differences between natural and agricultural lands.
SIEMIC: Swarm Investigation of the Energetics of Magnetosphere-Ionosphere Coupling Living Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Ivan Pakhotin.
Ivan's recent published work in magnetosphere-ionosphere coupling (MIC) using the unprecedented Swarm dataset has revealed that Alfven waves play a key role in MIC [...]
UNIVERSITY OF ALBERTA (CA)Scienceionosphere and magnetosphere, living planet fellows, scienceLiving Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Ivan Pakhotin. Ivan’s recent published work in magnetosphere-ionosphere coupling (MIC) using the unprecedented Swarm dataset has revealed that Alfven waves play a key role in MIC dynamics, with small scales carrying very significant amounts of energy. His recent preliminary work has further indicated that in fact most of the Poynting flux carried from the magnetosphere into the ionosphere appears to be carried by small-scale and mesoscale electromagnetic disturbances. This is in contrast to the state-of-the-art in the community, where low-pass filtering methods are routinely used to deliberately attenuate small and mesoscale FACs in an attempt to remove Alfven wave influence. This systematic exclusion of smaller scales leads to chronic underestimations of the energetics of MIC, which translates into uncertainty in the estimations of Joule heating when calculating magnetosphere-ionosphere-thermosphere (MIT) energy transport. Indeed modern MIT models have been found to contain significant uncertainties, particularly in the area of Joule heating and Poynting flux, which is hampering modelling efforts to establish the energy budget for the MIT system for space weather forecasting.   This project is a direct continuation of Ivan’s latest work, aiming to answer a single question: how much energy flows from the magnetosphere to the ionosphere at which scales into each hemisphere? His preliminary research has shown that, not only are Alfven waves and small scales extremely important for the energetics of MIC, but also it appears that energy input into the ionosphere may not be symmetric across hemispheres. A statistical study using Swarm electric and magnetic field data has shown consistently higher Poynting flux energy flow on the sunlit hemisphere if the spacecraft is in noon-midnight orbit. This contradicts the hypothesis that the ionosphere is a passive load where the only changes are due to conductivity differences. The interhemispheric asymmetry has been alluded to in recent modelling papers, but to the best of Ivan’s knowledge there has not been a thorough statistical study on this based on spacecraft observations. Such a result would be a significant milestone in understanding MIT energy transfer as it would elucidate the physical nature of key processes which as of now are not well understood. The improved energy calculations considering smaller scales will serve as a valuable input to ionosphere-thermosphere models and studies, and will facilitate high-quality research in that field.
SMOS+ Med: Sea Surface Salinity in the Mediterranean Ocean salinity reflects precipitation and evaporation rates, river runoff and ice formation and melting. It is an essential variable for the Earth's climate, because it influences ocean circulation, convection and mixing, through its effect on [...]UNIVERSITY OF LIEGE (BE)Scienceoceans, scienceOcean salinity reflects precipitation and evaporation rates, river runoff and ice formation and melting. It is an essential variable for the Earth’s climate, because it influences ocean circulation, convection and mixing, through its effect on water density, playing an important role in the global heat exchange between ocean and atmosphere (Lagerloef and Font, 2010), a mechanism that regulates the climate. Through its role in ocean circulation, salinity also impacts primary productivity, making nutrients accessible or not to the food web, having an influence in e.g. fisheries. Salinity also influences, through the thermohaline circulation, the rate of atmospheric CO 2 uptake.This project aims at calculating a sea surface salinity (SSS) field over the north Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea for the past 6 years, using a combination of techniques developed by the partners of the project, GEHR (Belgium) and BEC (Spain). This approach combined a debiased non-Bayesian retrieval of the SSS, the use of DINEOF (Data Interpolating Empirical Orthogonal Functions) to correct for systematic errors, and multifractal fusion to obtain a L4 dataset.The resulting dataset has been compared to in situ data, demonstrating that the new methodology reduces by half the error with respect to previous estimates of SSS in the Mediterranean Sea. The dataset is available for download at http://bec.icm.csic.es/thredds/BECEXPMED.html
SMOS+ Rainfall Land Quantitative precipitation estimate is one vital input to meteorologists, hydrologic scientists, water resources managers, and environmental legislators. Yet, accurate measurement of precipitation over the relevant space and time scales remains [...]CNRS, DELEGATION REGIONALE ALPES (FR)Scienceland, science, SMOS, water cycle and hydrologyQuantitative precipitation estimate is one vital input to meteorologists, hydrologic scientists, water resources managers, and environmental legislators. Yet, accurate measurement of precipitation over the relevant space and time scales remains a challenge. Soil moisture can be seen as the trace of the precipitation and, consequently, can be useful for providing a way to estimate rainfall accumulation or at least a new constrain to rainfall algorithms. In this context, the objective of the ‘SMOS+RAINFALL’ project is to ingest satellite soil moisture information derived from ASCAT, SMOS and SMAP into the latest state-of-the-art satellite precipitation products like those derived from the Global Precipitation Measurement mission (GPM) to enhance rainfall observation accuracy over land. Two main approaches are considered in the project: 1) the Soil Moisture to Rain (SM2RAIN) approach which retrieves rainfall information from satellite soil moisture by inverting the soil water balance equation and then merge it with the Integrated Multi-satellitE Retrievals for GPM (IMERG) Early Run version via an Optimal Linear Interpolation approach and 2) Precipitation Inferred from Soil Moisture (PrISM) approach which is based on a particle filter data assimilation. Key features Potentially availability of enhanced rainfall observations in near real time with a latency of about 1 to 3 days No use of ground-based observations which over data scarce regions can be very uncertain due to interpolation errors. Use complementary microwave-based satellite soil moisture observations as to obtain always best rainfall correction in space and time.
SMOS+ Rainfall Ocean Several recent studies have concluded that climate change causes major changes in the global water cycle. There is increasing evidence that part of the multi-decadal trends observed on the sea surface salinity (SSS) are due to changes in the [...]ARGANS LIMITED (GB)Scienceoceans, science, SMOS, water cycle and hydrologySeveral recent studies have concluded that climate change causes major changes in the global water cycle. There is increasing evidence that part of the multi-decadal trends observed on the sea surface salinity (SSS) are due to changes in the global water cycle, e.g. the western tropical Pacific has become fresher and the subtropical North Atlantic has become saltier. Given that most of the evaporation and precipitations occur over the ocean, a main challenge for studying the global water cycle is the monitoring of freshwater fluxes over the ocean. However monitoring these fluxes is difficult, in large part because precipitation is a very variable and intermittent process. Hence, it has been shown that the measure of sea surface salinity (SSS) provides an indirect but integrated information on air-sea freshwater flux that might be powerful for monitoring changes in the water cycle. This was one of the major motivations for observing SSS from space and two satellite salinity missions: the Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) and the Aquarius missions, which now have provided global SSS fields over the last several years. STSE SMOS+ Rainfall aims to exploit potential offered by SMOS L1 and L2 measurements to infer or enhance rainfall information over the global ocean, as well as define the potential contribution of SMOS to current efforts to retrieve rainfall information from satellites. The project has developed a suitable and scientifically sound methodological approach to exploit SMOS observations to retrieve or enhance existing rainfall information, by estimating the SSS anomalies caused by rainfall and calibrating a model that relates such anomalies to rainfall rates. The novel methodology relies only in SMOS data to obtain rainfall estimations, if well additional satellite-derived rainfall data has been used for both calibration and evaluation of the product, namely SSMI and IMERG. The project has also defined the range of validity, error structure and uncertainty of these retrievals and created a roadmap towards their improvement and integration into other existing rainfall products. Current results show that SMOS-derived rainfall performs better over ocean than some of the existing radiometer-derived products, and it has consistent results when comparing with IMERG. A global algorithm is currently under development to extend the current processor to a larger scale than the ones contemplated in the study previously. This study proves that SMOS can contribute to the increase of knowledge about the water cycle and that L-band missions can play a significant role in the acquisition of rainfall data at global scale.
SMOS+ VEGETATION ESA’s SMOS mission is part of ESA’s Living Planet Programme and carries the first-ever, polar-orbiting, space-borne, 2-D interferometric radiometer providing observations at 1.4 GHz. From the Level 1 brightness temperatures we derive the Level-2 [...]THE INVERSION LAB THOMAS KAMINSKI CONSULTING (DE)Sciencebiosphere, carbon cycle, carbon science cluster, land, science, SMOSESA’s SMOS mission is part of ESA’s Living Planet Programme and carries the first-ever, polar-orbiting, space-borne, 2-D interferometric radiometer providing observations at 1.4 GHz. From the Level 1 brightness temperatures we derive the Level-2 data products, namely surface soil moisture and vegetation optical depth (VOD) (over land) and sea surface salinity (over oceans). SMOS not only contributes towards our understanding of the global water cycle, but also has the potential to improve our understanding of the global carbon cycle. The assimilation of SMOS soil moisture into a carbon assimilation scheme built around a terrestrial biosphere model was found to improve global CO2 flux estimates. Similarly, assimilating SMOS soil moisture and AMSR-E C-band VOD data into an evapotranspiration (ET) model was found to improve ET and root-zone soil moisture estimates over Australia.However, there is still a lack of in-depth understanding of the VOD product, and its potential to monitor vegetation properties and processes has not yet been satisfactorily explored. In this context, this activity aims to increase the scientific return of the SMOS VOD data product by preparing and promoting its use for vegetation applications in the fields of agriculture, drought monitoring and land surface modeling.
SMOWS: Satellite Mode Waters Salinity, in synergy with Temperature and Sea Level Living Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Audrey Hasson.

Mode waters (MWs) transport a large volume of heat, carbon and other properties across basins at seasonal to longer time-scales and thus play a major role in the [...]
CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE (CNRS) (FR)Scienceliving planet fellows, ocean science cluster, oceans, scienceLiving Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Audrey Hasson. Mode waters (MWs) transport a large volume of heat, carbon and other properties across basins at seasonal to longer time-scales and thus play a major role in the modulation of the Earth climate. In the context of anthropogenic global warming, unlocking the understanding of the MWs transport and characteristics is critical. MWs in the South Pacific Ocean are of particular interest because of their likely interaction with the El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO). Variations in the MWs, their relation with the observed long-term changes and possible implication for ENSO remain unknown. This proposal offers to investigate the MWs characteristics in surface salinity (SSS), temperature (SST) and sea level (SL), which are all Essential Climate Variables (ECV) emphasized by three European Climate Change Initiatives (CCIs). Their link with interannual to longer time scale variability of the Pacific Ocean also need further examination. MWs are subducted from the subtropical and sub-Antarctic Pacific mixed layers and subsequently flow equatorward at the subsurface or intermediate depth. They export the characteristics acquired at the surface into the subtropical gyre and the equatorial region. Surface observations can in consequence give us insight of the future characteristics found at depth at lower latitudes. According to IPCC (2013), it is likely that both the subduction of SSS anomalies and the movement of density surfaces due to warming have contributed to the observed changes in subsurface salinity. We will investigate properties of the formation areas and associated variations that will drive the volume and characteristics of the MWs. As MWs shoal, they modify the equatorial mixed layer characteristics, and could affect ENSO events. Studies indeed have shown that western equatorial Pacific SST and SSS modulate ENSO through vertical stratification. We will therefore to characterize the mean MWs pathways, properties and associated variations. In conclusion, the South Pacific Ocean is at the forefront of interannual variability to long-term modifications associated with climate change. It is therefore essential to study the observed SSS changes as they impact ENSO and SL variations. Satellite observations associated with in situ and modelling would ultimately enable us to unlock our understanding of the role of MWs SSS signature on interannual to longer timescale variability of the South Pacific Ocean.
SOLFEO – Spaceborne Observations over Latin America For Emission Optimization applications South America hosts the Amazon rain forest, the largest source of natural hydrocarbons (HC) emitted into the atmosphere. However, the forest undergoes continuous pressure due to increasing needs for pasture and agricultural land. Next to this, [...]The Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI) (NL)Scienceapplications, atmosphere, atmosphere science cluster, permanently open call, scienceSouth America hosts the Amazon rain forest, the largest source of natural hydrocarbons (HC) emitted into the atmosphere. However, the forest undergoes continuous pressure due to increasing needs for pasture and agricultural land. Next to this, large urban centers of South America face acute air quality problems. In this tense situation, it is important to closely monitor both the natural emissions released by the rainforest (hydrocarbons) and the rapidly changing anthropogenic emissions from agricultural activities (NH3 and NOx) and fossil fuel burning (NOx). By using satellite observations combined with a state-of-the-art model representation of the relevant processes, we develop advanced inversion algorithms for the estimation of emissions of ammonia(NH3), NOx and hydrocarbons, providing both qualitative and quantitative biogenic and anthropogenic emissions. SOLFEO takes advantage of the fine spatial resolution of OMI (AURA), IASI (METOP) and TROPOMI (Sentinel 5p) data to improve emission estimates over a largely understudied region.
STSE CryoSat+ CryoTop Evolution The aim of the CryoTop Evolution is to generate L2, L3 and L4 products over the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets from swath processing of CryoSat SARIn mode data.

The CryoTop datasets contain surface elevation generated from swath [...]
UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH (GB)Sciencecryosphere, polar science cluster, scienceThe aim of the CryoTop Evolution is to generate L2, L3 and L4 products over the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets from swath processing of CryoSat SARIn mode data. The CryoTop datasets contain surface elevation generated from swath processing of CryoSat-2 measurement. The CryoTop datasets also contain gridded products generated from the swath derived elevation, these are 2 Digital elevation models (500 m and 1 km posting) and 2 maps of rates of surface elevation change (500 m and 1 km posting) as well as associated errors. The swath elevation data are provided as NetCDF files following the naming convention of the original CryoSat-2 datafiles provided by the European Space Agency, the gridded products are provided as GeoTIFF files. The methodology and data format are described in the dataset user manual. In particular the CryoTop project has produced swath dataset elevation from baseline C data (2010 – 2016) over the Greenland ice sheet and DEM and rates of surface elevation change at 1 km and over the Antarctica ice sheet and DEM and DH/DT at 1 km.    
STSE-ARCTIC+ THEME 5 – CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE YEAR OF POLAR PREDICTIONS (YOPP) The A+5 study belongs to the STSE ARCTIC+ cluster of projects and specifically contributes to the Year of Polar Prediction (YoPP). A+5 is constructing a flexible system for Arctic Mission Benefit Analysis (ArcMBA) that evaluates in a [...]THE INVERSION LAB THOMAS KAMINSKI CONSULTING (DE)Sciencescience, snow and iceThe A+5 study belongs to the STSE ARCTIC+ cluster of projects and specifically contributes to the Year of Polar Prediction (YoPP). A+5 is constructing a flexible system for Arctic Mission Benefit Analysis (ArcMBA) that evaluates in a mathematically rigorous fashion the observational constraints imposed by individual and groups of EO (and in situ) data products in using the quantitative network design (QND) approach. The assessment of the observation impact (added value) is performed in terms of the uncertainty reduction in seasonal predictions of sea ice area, sea ice and snow volume. Response functions for observations and target quantities are computed by the sea ice-ocean model of the Max Planck Institute (MPIOM) in a global setup with focus over the Arctic. The project started in June 2016 and has a duration of 18 months. First, preliminary assessments address CryoSat-2 sea ice thickness and sea ice freeboard products provided by AWI. The observation impact is quantified through reduction in the uncertainty for predicted sea ice conditions over three regions along the Northern Sea Route (see Figure). The study further plans a systematic assessment of the impact that characteristics of a synthetic snow depth product (sampling frequency and accuracy) will have on the performance of sea ice predictions.
SUNLIT – Synergy of Using Nadir and Limb Instruments for Tropospheric ozone monitoring The project aims at developing a new global tropospheric ozone datasets form TROPOMI and OMI measurements. These data will be a valuable addition to the operational TROPOMI Tropospheric ozone column product by the convective cloud differential [...]FINNISH METEOROLOGICAL INSTITUTE (FI)Scienceatmosphere, atmosphere science cluster, permanently open call, scienceThe project aims at developing a new global tropospheric ozone datasets form TROPOMI and OMI measurements. These data will be a valuable addition to the operational TROPOMI Tropospheric ozone column product by the convective cloud differential method, which will be available for tropics only. In addition, the multi-limb-instrument stratospheric ozone column dataset, compatible with nadir total ozone column measurements, which will be created as an intermediate step of the proposed development, will have its own value and can be used in climate-related ozone studies. The project has been kicked-off the 5th September. A first informal progress meeting has been on 10th December. First results have been shown and look promising.
Swarm+ Coupling High-Low Atmosphere Interactions: Ion Outflow The Swarm+ Coupling: High-Low Atmosphere Interactions ITT Statement of Work (SoW) has highlighted the “compelling scientific problem” of “the least-understood causes of planetary winds,” namely planetary outflows induced by “non-thermal (e.g., [...]UNIVERSITY OF BERGEN (NO)Scienceatmosphere, ionosphere and magnetosphere, scienceThe Swarm+ Coupling: High-Low Atmosphere Interactions ITT Statement of Work (SoW) has highlighted the “compelling scientific problem” of “the least-understood causes of planetary winds,” namely planetary outflows induced by “non-thermal (e.g., frictional heating, particle precipitation, wave-particle acceleration) processes.” The Swarm+ Coupling High-Low Atmosphere Interactions: Ion Outflow (“Swarm+ Outflow”) project, which began in May 2019, centers on using Swarm spacecraft to tackle unanswered questions around non-thermal processes that lead to ion outflow. The project approach is as follows: (i) Determine the conditions (eg., local time, solar wind/interplanetary magnetic field, hemisphere, season) under which 50-Hz magnetic field measurements and electron and ion density, temperature, and flow measurements made by Swarm spacecraft may be applicable for the study of energetic ion outflows; (ii) Determine possible statistical relationships between magnetic field perturbations measured by Swarm magnetometers and ion upflows/outflows measured at altitudes above, near, and below those of Swarm spacecraft; (iii) Validate and generalize previously published (e.g., Strangeway et al., 2005; Brambles et al., 2011) empirical relationships between electromagnetic perturbations and ion upflows in the Northern Hemisphere cusp region; (iv) Pending positive statistical results, produce a roadmap for development and refining of a Swarm-based ionospheric outflow product. This approach involves combining Swarm plasma and field measurements with measurements from a host of other instruments, including European Incoherent SCATter (EISCAT) radars, the Cluster satellites, and University of Oslo all-sky camera measurements.
SWARM+ COUPLING: HIGH-LOW ATMOSPHERE INTERACTIONS: VERtical coupling in Earth’s Atmosphere at mid and high latitudes (VERA) As described in the Statement of Work (SoW) document for the Swarm+ Coupling: High-Low Atmosphere Interactions, recent studies have revealed "a clear response of the low-latitude ionosphere to the large-scale meteorological events in the [...]HELMHOLTZ-ZENTRUM POTSDAM – DEUTSCHES GEOFORSCHUNGZENTRUM (GFZ) (DE)Scienceatmosphere, scienceAs described in the Statement of Work (SoW) document for the Swarm+ Coupling: High-Low Atmosphere Interactions, recent studies have revealed “a clear response of the low-latitude ionosphere to the large-scale meteorological events in the stratosphere called Sudden Stratospheric Warming events (SSW)”. In response to ESA ‘s Invitation to Tender (ITT), VERtical coupling in Earth’s Atmosphere at mid and high latitudes (VERA) investigates the SSW influence on the upper atmosphere based on Swarm observations, with special focus on the middle- and high-latitude regions. Swarm’s high precision magnetometers and its dedicated constellation for geospace research enable monitoring of inter-hemispheric field-aligned currents (IHFACs). The exploration of the Swarm IHFAC data, and comparisons with state-of-the-art numerical models can reveal how the inter-hemispheric coupling of the ionosphere can be disturbed by atmospheric forcing during SSWs. Also, the pole-to-pole measurements of the electron density by Swarm, along with the ionospheric data from ground-based radars and numerical simulations, will be explored for the possible influence of SSWs on the high-latitude ionosphere. The project was launched in June 2019 under the partnership of the GFZ (DE), CAS (CZ), UNB (CA). The scientific activity will continue until September 2020.
SWARM+ INNOVATION – SwArm For Earthquake study (SAFE) SAFE, SwArm For Earthquake study, is a project coordinated by the Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia (INGV) and funded by the European Space Agency (ESA), to investigate, by means of data collected from satellites and from [...]ISTITUTO NAZIONALE DI GEOFISICA E VULCANOLOGIA (IT)Sciencescience, solid earthSAFE, SwArm For Earthquake study, is a project coordinated by the Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia (INGV) and funded by the European Space Agency (ESA), to investigate, by means of data collected from satellites and from ground-based instruments, the phase preceding the great earthquakes with the aim to identify any electromagnetic signal from space. Flyer of the project is available on this link.
Synergetic use of SMOS L1 Data in Sun Flare detection and analysis The aim of the project is to develop a systematic retrieval of Sun Brightness Temperature in L-Band as measured by the SMOS Mission and analyse its correlation with measurements of solar flares currently used in Space Weather, as GOES X-ray [...]DEIMOS SPACE s.r.l. (RO)Sciencepermanently open call, scienceThe aim of the project is to develop a systematic retrieval of Sun Brightness Temperature in L-Band as measured by the SMOS Mission and analyse its correlation with measurements of solar flares currently used in Space Weather, as GOES X-ray flux.  The analysis will also focus on dedicated re-processing activities on selected dates with new Sun retrieval algorithms recently developed for the SMOS Mission, to assess the suitability of these new techniques and explore further evolutions. The full set of available SMOS Mission Data will be used to perform a systematic timing analysis of Sun L-band brightness temperature measurements with soft X-ray flux at different channels from GOES during flare events. Complementary data sources, as the Stokes polarization parameters from SMOS/MIRAS, hard X-ray flux from HESSI or Extreme UV emission from Proba-2/Lyra will also be analysed for additional correlation insight. The analysis of the results will allow us to relate the relative timing of solar flares observed at different wavelengths to physical processes in flares. X-class flares are the initial objective, but M flare may be included in the sample. The project will also issue recommendations (based on the findings of the analysis part) for the operational use of SMOS data as an asset to SWE monitoring and the possibility of continuing missions in this regard. The Sun Brightness Temperature in L-Band data to be extracted in the scope of this project will be deployed in an online data portal which aims at providing the SWE community with a source of usable data for further analysis than the one performed in this contract. The service will be based on an online portal that will contain SMOS Sun Brightness temperature data for the complete mission, additional reprocessing campaigns and ad-hoc processing data can also be accessed by the users of the service. The data shall be also accessible through dedicated web services, in order to be exposed to other existing systems. The end users of the service would be able to access the Sun BT data by login in into the web portal and selecting the respective dates and processor version. The service can be continuously improved in operation by providing feedback loops, where the quality of its data is compared to other Ground based sources.
Technology and atmospheric mission platform – OPerations (TOP) The proposed atmospheric mission platform has the twofold aim of demonstrating that (1) multiple data sources (the "data triangle" namely satellite-based products, numerical model output, and ground measurements) can be simultaneously exploited [...]SISTEMA GMBH (AT)Digital Platform Servicesatmosphere science cluster, permanently open call, platforms, scienceThe proposed atmospheric mission platform has the twofold aim of demonstrating that (1) multiple data sources (the “data triangle” namely satellite-based products, numerical model output, and ground measurements) can be simultaneously exploited by users (mainly scientists), and (2) a fully Virtual Research Environment that allows avoiding the download of all data locally, and retrieving only the processing results is the optimal solution.
The 4D-Earth Swarm project

The goal of the 4D-Earth-Swarm project, supported by ESA, is to improve our understanding of the rapid (interannual) changes in the geomagnetic field, as recorded by the three satellites of the Swarm mission of ESA - as well as earlier [...]
CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE (CNRS) (FR)Scienceionosphere and magnetosphere, science, solid earth The goal of the 4D-Earth-Swarm project, supported by ESA, is to improve our understanding of the rapid (interannual) changes in the geomagnetic field, as recorded by the three satellites of the Swarm mission of ESA – as well as earlier satellite missions such as CHAMP and Oersted, and ground-based observatories. The project is planned for 2.5 years, starting in Sept. 2019. It gathers partners from 5 institutes (ISTerre Grenoble; ETH Zurich; Leeds University; IPG Paris, DTU Copenhagen). It involves in particular formatting of geomagnetic records, and their cleaning from external (magnetospheric and ionospheric) sources; numerical simulations of the geodynamo at extreme parameters; modeling of rapid field changes by means of reduced quasi-geostrophic equations; re-analysis of magnetic changes with a stochastic data assimilation algorithm; a specific analysis of the topographic coupling between the core and the mantle; a focus on high latitude jets and the physics on the cylinder tangent to the inner core and aligned with the Earth’s rotation axis.
The ionospheric signature of auroral and subauroral fast flows Living Planet Fellowship research project carried out by William Edward Archer.

The European Space Agency Swarm satellite mission is advancing the cutting edge of ionospheric space physics. Combined high-resolution measurements of electron [...]
UNIVERSITY OF SASKATCHEWAN (CA)Scienceionosphere and magnetosphere, living planet fellows, scienceLiving Planet Fellowship research project carried out by William Edward Archer. The European Space Agency Swarm satellite mission is advancing the cutting edge of ionospheric space physics. Combined high-resolution measurements of electron density, electron temperature, and electric and magnetic fields provide a robust picture of the electrodynamics of this energetic region. We will leverage the high-quality measurements of the Swarm satellites to advance our understanding of narrow regions of fast flow in the auroral and subauroral regions. These flows often exceed 1 km/s, span less than 100 km in latitude, persisting for several hours. The Swarm mission has already contributed significantly to the study of subauroral ion drifts (SAID) and Birkeland current boundary flows (BCBF). Both phenomena are scientifically relevant topics that are not fully understood. With this proposal, we will continue the study of these phenomena by leveraging newly available Swarm data products.
Volcanic monItoring using SenTinel sensors by an integrated Approach (VISTA) Volcanic monItoring using SenTinel sensors by an integrated Approach (VISTA) project is aimed at developing a novel ensemble of algorithms to completely characterized the effects of volcanic emissions on land and atmosphere. Volcanic activity is [...]GEO-K SRL (IT)Scienceatmosphere, atmosphere science cluster, land, permanently open call, science, Sentinel-5PVolcanic monItoring using SenTinel sensors by an integrated Approach (VISTA) project is aimed at developing a novel ensemble of algorithms to completely characterized the effects of volcanic emissions on land and atmosphere. Volcanic activity is observed worldwide with a variety of remote sensing instruments, each one with advantages and drawbacks. Because a single remote sensing instrument able to furnish a comprehensive description of a given phenomenon doesn’t exist, a multi-sensor approach is required. In particular, the aim of this study is the definition of a new generation of integrated methods which aim at exploiting the information of the COPERNICUS Sentinels data (from Visible-VIS to Thermal Infrared-TIR) by means of already consolidated retrieval algorithms and novel ML procedures. The increasing availability of Sentinel’s data allows an innovative perspective to achieve the objective of a complete monitoring of the eruptions effects by a unique satellite mission. Currently the possibilities offered by the COPERNICUS Sentinel missions are only partially explored to provide new consistent and statistically reliable information about volcanic cloud quantification and dispersion in the atmosphere and ash deposits on the ground. Such information is crucial for aviation safety and civil protection purposes therefore new tools to exploit satellite observations are required. The project will develop specific methodologies integrating inverse modeling techniques (based on radiative transfer models) with dedicated machine learning (ML) approaches to formulate a set of novel integrated methods. The expected outcomes of the project are improvements in satellite volcanic ash/ice/water vapour particles/SO2 cloud detection and retrievals (altitude, extension, mass, concentration, aerosol optical depth and effective radius), the development of a specific ML based algorithm to map the presence of ash deposits over land and the generation of new satellite-based prototypal services to mitigate the effect of volcanic eruption on health, environment, aviation and to better understand volcanic processes.
WACMOS Irrigation Irrigation is one of the greatest human intervention in the hydrological cycle. The knowledge of the distribution, the extent of irrigated areas and the amount of water used by irrigation is needed for different purposes: 1) modelling irrigation [...]CNR-RESEARCH INSTITUTE FOR GEO-HYDROLOGICAL PROTECTION – IRPI (IT)Sciencescience, water cycle and hydrologyIrrigation is one of the greatest human intervention in the hydrological cycle. The knowledge of the distribution, the extent of irrigated areas and the amount of water used by irrigation is needed for different purposes: 1) modelling irrigation water requirements at the global scale, 2) assessing irrigated food production, 3) quantifying the impact of irrigation on climate, river discharge and groundwater depletion. Notwithstanding its recognized importance, to obtain high-quality information about the actual irrigated areas worldwide is nontrivial and the problem is much more pronounced in terms of the quantification of the water actually used for irrigation. In this context, the objective of the WACMOS-MED project is to understand the potential of satellite soil moisture data in detecting and quantifying irrigation at global scale.
WIFT: Water vapour Isotopologues From TROPOMI Living Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Andreas Schneider.

The role of atmospheric water vapour in the hydrological cycle, the atmospheric circulation, and the radiation and energy budgets is largely uncertain. Improving [...]
STICHTING NEDERLANDSE WETENSCHAPPELIJK (NL)Scienceatmosphere, living planet fellows, scienceLiving Planet Fellowship research project carried out by Andreas Schneider. The role of atmospheric water vapour in the hydrological cycle, the atmospheric circulation, and the radiation and energy budgets is largely uncertain. Improving knowledge on these is one of the key challenges in atmospheric sciences and of great importance for projections of climate change. Measurements of water isotopologues provide information about the history of a sampled air parcel due to isotopic fractionation during evaporation and condensation and so give significant constraints for the processes involved. Global observations are especially useful for constraining general circulation models, but to date no satellite data set with high sensitivity in the lowermost troposphere (where most water vapour resides) and decent spatial and temporal resolution and data quality is available. The new Tropospheric Monitoring Instrument (TROPOMI) aboard the Sentinel 5 Precursor satellite is expected to be a ‘game-changer’, as it measures sunlight reflected by Earth’s atmosphere in the shortwave infrared spectral range with unprecedented spatial resolution up to 7 km × 7 km, daily global coverage, and high radiometric performance. The subject of this project is to exploit these measurements to retrieve the water vapour isotopologues H216O, HDO and, if possible, H218O. To this end, the SICOR retrieval algorithm suite, which has high software maturity, is employed. After setting up a processing pipeline at a high performance computing infrastructure, results will be validated against ground-based observations from the Total Carbon Column Observing Network (TCCON). Should recent data from the Multi-platform remote Sensing of Isotopologues for investigating the Cycle of Atmospheric water (MUSICA) project become available, these will also be used for validation. The influence of state-of-the-art molecular water vapour spectroscopy on the data product will be investigated. Moreover, the feasibility to infer the H218O isotopologue from TROPOMI measurements will be assessed. In this context, the spectral window will be optimised to minimise cross-dependencies between different isotopologues. Finally, the maturity and use of the new data product will be demonstrated. First, it will be compared to simulations with an isotope-enable global circulation model. The topic of the following investigation depends on the outcome of the feasibility study. In case the deuterium excess parameter can be obtained with sufficient accuracy, water vapour originating from combustion shall be studied on city scale. Alternatively, the role of evapotranspiration on the isotopic composition (HDO/H216O) in dependence of land usage will be examined. The outcome of this project will be an additional mature data product in ESA’s portfolio from the Sentinel missions.