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Polarimetric microwave brightness signatures of ocean wind directions

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4 Author(s)
Yueh, S.H. ; Jet Propulsion Lab., California Inst. of Technol., Pasadena, CA, USA ; Wilson, W.J. ; Dinardo, S.J. ; Fuk K.Li

The sensitivities of wind direction signals in passive microwave brightness temperatures of sea surfaces to wind speed, incidence angle, polarization, and frequency are presented in this paper. The experimental data were acquired from a series of aircraft flights from 1993 through 1996 by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) using JPL 19 and 37 GHz polarimetric radiometers (WINDRAD). Fourier analysis of the data versus mind direction was carried out and the coefficients of Fourier series are illustrated against the wind speed at 45°, 55°, and 65° incidence angles. There is a good agreement between the JPL aircraft flight data and Wentz's Special Sensor Microwave/Imager (SSM/I) geophysical model function for the vertically polarized brightness temperatures, but Wentz's SSM/I wind direction model for horizontal polarization shows a significantly stronger upwind and downwind asymmetry than the aircraft flight data. Comparison of the dual-frequency WINDRAD data show's that the wind direction signals are similar at 19 and 37 GHz, although the 37 GHz data have slightly stronger signals than the 19 GHz data. In general, the azimuthal variations of brightness temperatures increase with increasing wind speed from low to moderate winds, then level off and decrease at high minds. The only exception is the U measurements at 65° incidence angle, which have a stronger than expected signal at low winds. An exponential function was proposed to model the sensitivities of wind direction signals to wind speeds. The coefficients of the empirical model are provided in this paper and are useful for the simulation of ocean brightness temperatures and for the development of geophysical retrieval algorithms

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Geoscience and Remote Sensing, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:37 ,  Issue: 2 )