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Assimilation of Space-based Passive Microwave Soil Moisture Retrievals and the Correction for a Dynamic Open Water Fraction : Volume 9, Issue 1 (18/01/2012)

By Gouweleeuw, B. T.

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Book Id: WPLBN0004013083
Format Type: PDF Article :
File Size: Pages 27
Reproduction Date: 2015

Title: Assimilation of Space-based Passive Microwave Soil Moisture Retrievals and the Correction for a Dynamic Open Water Fraction : Volume 9, Issue 1 (18/01/2012)  
Author: Gouweleeuw, B. T.
Volume: Vol. 9, Issue 1
Language: English
Subject: Science, Hydrology, Earth
Collections: Periodicals: Journal and Magazine Collection, Copernicus GmbH
Publication Date:
Publisher: Copernicus Gmbh, Göttingen, Germany
Member Page: Copernicus Publications


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J. M. Van Dij, A. I., Dyce, P., Owe, M., Guerschman, J. P., M. De Je, R. A., & Gouweleeuw, B. T. (2012). Assimilation of Space-based Passive Microwave Soil Moisture Retrievals and the Correction for a Dynamic Open Water Fraction : Volume 9, Issue 1 (18/01/2012). Retrieved from

Description: CSIRO Land and Water, Canberra, ACT, Australia. The large observation footprint of low-frequency satellite microwave emissions complicates the interpretation of near-surface soil moisture retrievals. While the effect of sub-footprint lateral heterogeneity is relatively limited under unsaturated conditions, open water bodies, if not accounted for, cause a strong positive bias in the satellite-derived soil moisture retrieval. This bias is generally assumed static and associated with large, continental lakes and coastal areas. Temporal changes in the extent of smaller water bodies as small as a few percent of the sensor footprint size, however, can cause significant and dynamic biases. We analysed the influence of such small open water bodies near-surface soil moisture retrieval data from the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer for the Earth Observing System (AMSR-E) for three areas in Oklahoma, USA. Differences between on-ground observations, model estimates and AMSR-E retrievals were compared to dynamic estimates of open water fraction, one retrieved from a global daily record based on higher frequency AMSR-E data and another derived from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS). The comparisons demonstrates that seasonally varying biases of up to 30 vol.% soil water content can be attributed to the presence of relatively small areas (<5%) of open water in or near the sensor footprint. These errors need to be addressed, either through elimination or accurate characterization, if the soil moisture retrievals are to be used effectively in a data assimilation scheme.

Assimilation of space-based passive microwave soil moisture retrievals and the correction for a dynamic open water fraction

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