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In 2002 the Hydrosphere State Mission (Hydros) was selected by NASA as the alternate mission for a flight opportunity under its Earth System Science Pathfinder program. The Hydros mission objective was to collect the first global scale measurements of the Earth's soil moisture and land surface freeze/thaw conditions, using a combined L band radiometer and radar system operating at 1.41 and 1.26 GHz, respectively. Although NASA cancelled the Hydros mission in December 2005 due to insufficient funding and its reversion back to alternate mission status, the development of accurate soil moisture retrieval algorithms and associated error analyses begun under the Hydros project are still relevant to SMOS and to other potential future soil moisture missions.
Date of Conference: July 31 2006-Aug. 4 2006