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The drastic reduction of Arctic sea ice in recent years demands ice monitoring over various spatial and temporal scales. Sea ice backscatter signatures from field measurements and from model analyses are obtained at L-band and C-band frequencies. Based on these signatures, capabilities for Arctic sea ice mapping are determined for current and future satellite active microwave sensors including synthetic aperture radars (SAR) and scatterometers. This study includes L-band and C-band radars such as the ERS (European Remote Sensing), Envisat (Environmental Satellite), RADARSAT-1 and 2, ALOS (Advanced Land Observing Satellite), and DESDnyl (Deformation, Ecosystem Structure, and Dynamics of Ice). SARs with resolutions from 10 to 100 m, and the SMAP (Soil Moisture Active-Passive) scatterometer with resolutions from 1 to 10 km.
Date of Publication: Nov. 2009