Howell, SEL, Derksen, C, Tivy, A (2010). Development of a water clear of sea ice detection algorithm from enhanced SeaWinds/QuikSCAT and AMSR-E measurements. REMOTE SENSING OF ENVIRONMENT, 114(11), 2594-2609.
We develop and evaluate water clear of sea ice (open water following ice cover) detection algorithms that make use of Scatterometer Image Reconstruction (SIR) SeaWinds/QuikSCAT (QuikSCAT) backscatter (sigma degrees) and Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer for the Earth Observing System (AMSR-E) brightness temperature (T-B) measurements. Algorithm validation was performed within Canadian Arctic waters using the Canadian Ice Service Digital Archive (CISDA) ice charts, NASATeam ice concentration estimates, extended AVHRR Polar Pathfinder (APP-x) albedo data, RADARSAT-1 imagery, and MODIS imagery. Results indicate that the temporal evolution of QuikSCAT sigma degrees, AMSR-E polarization ratio (PR18), and AMSR-E vertical spectral gradient ratio (GR3618) can detect water clear of sea ice events, however mean differences due to frequency dependent characteristics of the data (spatial resolution; sensitivity to open water) were apparent. All water clear of sea ice algorithms are in good agreement with the timing and clearing patterns given by the CISDA. The QuikSCAT algorithm provided a more representative ice edge and more details on the ice clearing process due to higher spatial resolution, however, transient clearing events were better represented by the AMSR-E PR(18) or (GR3618) algorithm. By exploiting the strengths of each sensor, we found that a QuikSCAT and AMSR-E fused algorithm provide improved open water area estimates by as much as 11%. The fusion of QuikSCAT and AMSR-E PR(18) yielded in the most spatially representative open water detection. The residual surface of the water clear of sea ice algorithms was found to provide another measure of the average September minimum pan-Arctic sea ice extent within 6% of the NASATeam algorithm estimates. Crown Copyright (C) 2010 Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.