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Influence of tropospheric water vapor corrections on geosat altimetry in the North Atlantic Ocean
Didden, N.; Stammer, D. (1994). Influence of tropospheric water vapor corrections on geosat altimetry in the North Atlantic Ocean. J. Atmos. Oceanic. Technol. 11(4): 982-993
In: Journal of Atmospheric and Oceanic Technology. American Meteorological Society: Boston, MA. ISSN 0739-0572, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in Authors 

Keywords
    Altimetry; Geosensing; Meteorology; Remote sensing; Satellite altimetry; Signal processing; Water vapor; AN, North Atlantic [Marine Regions]; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Didden, N.
  • Stammer, D.

Abstract
    Cicosal sea surface height (SSH) data in the tropical and midlatitude North Atlantic are analyzed with and without water vapor (WV) correction to study the WV influence on along-track SSH anomaly profits, mesoscale SSH variability, wavenumber spectra, and objectively mapped fields of SSH anomaly. Three different WV datasets were used, one from the Fleet Numerical Oceanographic Center (FNOC) model and two from the Special Sensor Microwave/Imager (SSM/I) based on different WV retrieval algorithms. These WV dataset show significant differences, in particular in the tropics. However, the method for deriving SSH anomalies from altimeter height data Alters out much of the WV corrections. The residual WV effect on SSH anomaly is shown to be most significant in the seasonally migrating intertropical convergence zone of the tropical Atlantic: there the SSM/I corrections reduce the along-track mesoscale SSH variability by typically 1-1.5 cm. On seasonal timescales the maximum WV effect in this region is characterized by a 2-3-cm rms difference between SSH anomaly with and without SSM/I WV corrections, whereas FNOC corrections have almost no effect. Inferred seasonal velocity variations in the North Equatorial Countercurrent core (4° - 6°N) in the region of maximum WY influence (30° - 40°W) are reduced by about 20% and 30%, depending on whether SSM/I corrections by Emery or Wentz are used.

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