Talks and Poster Presentations (without Proceedings-Entry):

I. Mladenova, V. Lakshmi, J. Walker, R. Panciera, W. Wagner, M. Doubkova:
"Can the ASAR Global Monitoring Mode Product Adequately Capture Spatial Soil Moisture Variability?";
Talk: AGU Fall Meeting San Francisco, San Francisco; 2008-12-15 - 2008-12-19.

English abstract:
Global soil moisture (SM) monitoring in the past several decades has been undertaken mainly at coarse spatial resolution, which is not adequate for addressing small-scale phenomena and processes. The currently operational Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer (NASA) and future planned missions such as the Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (ESA) and the Soil Moisture Active Passive (NASA) will remain resolution limited. Finer scale soil moisture estimates can be achieved either by down-scaling the available coarse resolution radiometer and scatterometer (i.e. ERS1/2, ASCAT) observations or by using high resolution active microwave SAR type systems (typical resolution is in the order of meters). Considering the complex land surface - backscatter signal interaction, soil moisture inversion utilizing active microwave observations is difficult and generally needs supplementary data. Algorithms based on temporal change detection offer an alternative less complex approach for deriving (and disaggregating coarse) soil moisture estimates. Frequent monitoring and low frequency range along with a high pixel resolution are essential preconditions when characterizing spatial and temporal soil moisture variability. An alternative active system that meets these requirements is the Advance Synthetic Aperture Radar (ASAR) on ENVISAT [C-band, global, 1 km in Global Monitoring (GM) Mode]. The Vienna University of Technology (TU Wien) has developed a 1 km soil moisture product using the temporal change detection approach and the ASAR GM. The TU Wien SM product sensitivity was evaluated at two scales: point (using in situ data from permanent soil moisture stations) and regional [using ground measured data and aircraft estimates derived from the Polarimetric L-band Microwave Radiometer (PLMR)] over the National Airborne Field Experiment (NAFE'05) area located in the Goulburn catchment, SE Australia. The month long (November 2005) campaign was undertaken in a region predominantly covered by grasslands and partly by forests and croplands. Point scale analysis revealed high ASAR sensitivity and adequate response to changes in moisture conditions (R = 0.69 and RMSE = 0.08 v/v). Regional analysis was performed at several different spatial resolutions (1 km to 25 km). ASAR exhibited high noise level and significant wet bias. Increase in pixel size resulted in improving R and RMSE from R = 0.59 and RMSE = 0.14 to R = 0.91 and RMSE = 0.05 at 1 km and 25 km respectively; however, despite the reasonable statistical agreement at 1 km, the soil moisture spatial patterns clearly visible in the PLMR images, the later were verified with ground data, were lacking in the ASAR product.

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