Observations of Radar Backscatter at Ku and C Bands in the Presence of Large Waves during the Surface Wave Dynamics Experiment

S. V. Nghiem, Fuk K. Li, Shu hsiang Lou, Gregory Neumann, Robert E. McIntosh, Steven C. Carson, James R. Carswell, Edward J. Walsh, Edward J. Walsh, Mark A. Donelan, William M. Drennan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations

Abstract

Ocean radar backscatter in the presence of large waves is investigated using data acquired with the Jet Propulsion Laboratory NUSCAT radar at Ku band for horizontal and vertical polarizations and the University of Massachusetts CSCAT radar at C band for vertical polarization during the Surface Wave Dynamics Experiment. Off-nadir backscatter data of ocean surfaces were obtained in the presence of large waves with significant wave height up to 5.6 m. In moderate-wind cases, effects of large waves are not detectable within the measurement uncertainty and no noticeable correlation between backscatter coefficients and wave height is found. Under high-wave light-wind conditions, backscatter is enhanced significantly at large incidence angles with a weaker effect at small incidence angles. Backscatter coefficients in the wind speed range under consideration are compared with SASS-II (Ku band), CMOD3-H1 (C band), and Plant's model results which confirm the experimental observations. Variations of the friction velocity, which can give rise to the observed backscatter behaviors in the presence of large waves, are presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)708-721
Number of pages14
JournalIEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing
Volume33
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1995
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

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