Postdoctoral Researcher: Satellite-Based Data Assimilation... We are searching for an enthusiastic postdoctoral researcher with experience in land surface modeling and/or data assimilation to implement advanced modules into an existing global land surface data assimilation system. You will be part of the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Division Soil and Water Management, at the KU Leuven (Belgium), working under the...

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SMOS helps understanding the Gulf of Guinea cold tongue... Cold tongue and African Monsoon Provided by Christophe MAES Adding a pinch of salt or putting a little less cold water, the oceanic cooking recipe going on in the Gulf of Guinea may play a major role on the African monsoon rainfall patterns. In order to unravel the spicy recipe and shed some light on the processes driving the hydrological cycle - which is a key element...

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SMOS research products for the Cryosphere in Antarctica The aim of the CryoSMOS project, funded by the European Space Agency (ESA) and led by IFAC (Florence, Italy), is to evaluate the ability of SMOS observations to retrieve glaciological parameters or to monitor climatic processes in Antarctica. The study focused on some broad areas of the continent having specific physical characteristics: the Antarctic Plateau, the ice-shelves...

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SMOS helps discriminating water sources in cold seas Discriminating water sources from space in the Arctic Ocean: A case study for the southern Beaufort Sea using MODIS ocean color and SMOS salinity data A recent paper by Matsuoka et al. (2016), using SMOS ESA L2 SSS, found nice correlations between the interannual variability of SMOS SSS and ocean color CDOM (see fig 1 and 2 below) in the Mackenzie river mouth. Using this...

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Position opening at CESBIO Position opening at CESBIO In the framework of the SMOS (Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity) follow on mission, the Centre d’Etudes Spatiales de la BIOsphère (CESBIO) is opening a position. The duration is 12 months with a possible extension. SMOS was launched in 2009 and has been running very smoothly ever since (see here or on this blog). SMOS relies on the use...

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Postdoctoral Researcher: Satellite-Based Data Assimilation for Soil Moisture Estimation

Category : Model, position opening

We are searching for an enthusiastic postdoctoral researcher with experience in land surface modeling and/or data assimilation to implement advanced modules into an existing global land surface data assimilation system. You will be part of the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Division Soil and Water Management, at the KU Leuven (Belgium), working under the supervision of prof. Gabrielle De Lannoy.

Soil moisture is a key variable in the water, energy and carbon cycle over land. The objective of this project is to merge large-scale land surface simulations with satellite-based microwave observations, using an advanced data assimilation scheme which corrects for both the random and persistent errors in soil moisture estimates. The improved soil moisture time series will help enhancing subsequent predictions of flooding, landslides, soil and vegetation carbon, deeper groundwater and the atmospheric boundary layer.

Our team

Responsibilities
==========
- Perform and disseminate highly qualitative research related to land surface modeling, observation and data assimilation
- Possibly supervise PhD or master thesis students

Profile
==========
- PhD degree in Hydrology, Civil or Environmental Engineering, Meteorology, Remotely Sensed Earth Observation, Physics, Mathematics, Computer Sciences, or equivalent
- Experience with data-processing applications such as Matlab/Python, IDL,GrADS, R, or other
- Experience in programming and scientific computing
- Excellent motivation and grades
- Creative, critical, analytical and innovative mindset
- Ability to work independently
- Excellent written and oral communication skills in English, proven in publications

Offer
==========
- 2-year position with a competitive salary; support in career development
- Multi-disciplinary and international professional environment
- Leuven is a charming historical university town, located in the heart of Western Europe

Interested?
==========
Only persons matching the above profile should apply. Please submit your resume, along with a motivation letter and two names for references on-line. The start date is 1 June 2017, but earlier or later start dates can be negotiated. For more information please contact prof. Gabrielle De Lannoy, tel.: +32 16 37 67 13, mail: gabrielle.delannoy@kuleuven.be.

Apply for this job no later than 15 May, 2017 via the online application tool. The position will remain open until filled by an excellent candidate.

SMOS helps understanding the Gulf of Guinea cold tongue to eventually forecats rainfall amounts in Western Africa

Category : Non classé

Cold tongue and African Monsoon

Provided by Christophe MAES

Adding a pinch of salt or putting a little less cold water, the oceanic cooking recipe going on in the Gulf of Guinea may play a major role on the African monsoon rainfall patterns. In order to unravel the spicy recipe and shed some light on the processes driving the hydrological cycle – which is a key element for the West African societies, scientists endeavoured to understand the “Atlantic cold tongue process » [1]. « This equatorial zone of the ocean goes through, each year during the north hemisphere spring/summer period a double phenomenon which is closely related to the rainfall in western Africa as already known. Casimir Da-Allada, an oceanographer, explains that surface water cools down while its salinity increases to reach a maximum in June for salinity but only in July for the low temperatures.

bouee-pirata (c) IRD / B. Bourlès Bouée Pirata lors d’une campagne océanographique dans le golfe de Guinée

The challenge is to link these two parameters whose maxima are separated by a month. Eventually, researchers hope to anticipate the temperature from the salinity measurements obtained a month before to derive rainfall forecasts over West Africa. From such information, it would be possible to anticipate rainfall volume and decide as early as June, whether to sow high yield but water demanding seeds or, conversely, more rustic, lower yield, seeds able to survive droughts…

RZSM1(c) CESBIO A Albitar: Root zone soil moisture to estimate a drought index from SMOS

So as to study this possibility, scientists made use of the ESA led SMOS mission [2] as well as in situ PIRATA buoys measurements [3]. They have developed numerical simulation models and derived the salt budget of the cold tongue and identified the vertical transport processes in the water column. « According to our results, the salinity change occurring at the end of spring is linked to the seasonal equatorial sub current activity, which pushes upwards the deep water towards the surface” indicates the scientist. “Less subject to incoming fresh water (rainfall and river outflow), the sea water is saltier than surface water ». Ongoing studies evaluate the relevance of salinity as an indicator of intensity of the cool tongue seasonal onset. Once done, it will be necessary to confirm its ability to help better anticipate the African Monsoon.

[1] Da-Allada, C. Y., Jouanno, J., Gaillard, F., Kolodziejczyk, N., Maes, C., Reul, N. and Bourlès, B. (2017), Importance of the Equatorial Undercurrent on the Sea Surface Salinity in the Eastern Equatorial Atlantic in boreal spring. J. Geophys. Res. Oceans, 122

[2] Kerr, Y.H., Waldteufel, P., Wigneron, J.P., Delwart, S., Cabot, F., Boutin, J., Escorihuela, M.J., Font, J., Reul, N., Gruhier, C., Juglea, S.E., Drinkwater, M.R., Hahne, A., Martin-Neira, M., & Mecklenburg, S. (2010). The SMOS Mission: New Tool for Monitoring Key Elements of the Global Water Cycle. Proceedings of the Ieee, 98, 666-687

[3] Prediction and Research Moored Array in the Tropical Atlantic

SMOS research products for the Cryosphere in Antarctica

Category : L3, L4

The aim of the CryoSMOS project, funded by the European Space Agency (ESA) and led by IFAC (Florence, Italy), is to evaluate the ability of SMOS observations to retrieve glaciological parameters or to monitor climatic processes in Antarctica. The study focused on some broad areas of the continent having specific physical characteristics: the Antarctic Plateau, the ice-shelves and the coastal region. Four SMOS derived research products have been developed:

1) Estimation of the internal ice-sheet temperature

Contact : Giovanni Macelloni, g.macelloni@ifac.cnr.it – IFAC, Florence, Italy

2) Estimation of ice thickness

Contact : Niels Skou, ns@space.dtu.dk,DTU, ns@space.dtu.dk – Technical University of Denmark – Denmark

3) Indicator of the origin of ice-shelves variability;

Contact : Lars Kaleschke, lars.kaleschke@uni-hamburg.de, UHAM – University of Hamburg, Germany

4) Surface melting occurrence

Contact : Ghislain Picard, ghislain.picard@univ-grenoble-alpes.fr,IGE – Institut des Geosciences de l’Environnement – Grenoble, France

The data are available from the CATDS and can be found here (free)

Information regarding these products can be found here

More information is available there

Two examples are shown in the figures below. The top most represents the temperature of the ice packs at a depth of 500m. The lower one gives the number of days of melt in 2010/2011.

Tice@-500m in SM_TEST_MIR_ITUDP4_20100101T0000

fig_melt_nbdays_smos_2010-2011

SMOS helps discriminating water sources in cold seas

Category : L2, Ocean

Discriminating water sources from space in the Arctic Ocean: A case study for the southern Beaufort Sea using MODIS ocean color and SMOS salinity data

A recent paper by Matsuoka et al. (2016), using SMOS ESA L2 SSS, found nice correlations between the interannual variability of SMOS SSS and ocean color CDOM (see fig 1 and 2 below) in the Mackenzie river mouth. Using this region as a case study, they derive an algorithm using this two sets of data for getting reasonable fractions of river water. As stated by the authors ‘Application of this algorithm may lead to the discrimination of water sources in the surface layer of the Arctic Ocean in various environments where seawater, ice melt water, and river water are intermingled,which might be useful to improve our understanding of physical and biogeochemical processes related to each water source’.

babin-1

Fig.1 : Satellite images of CDOM absorption coefficient at 443 nm [aCDOM(443),m−1] using MODIS ocean color data in July to August 2010 to 2012 (from Matsuoka et al. (2016))

babin-2

Fig. 2 : Same as Fig. 1 for SMOS SSS (from Matsuoka et al. (2016)).

Atsushi Matsuoka, Marcel Babin, Emmanuel C. Devred, A new algorithm for discriminating water sources from space: A case study for the southern Beaufort Sea using MODIS ocean color and SMOS salinity data, Remote Sensing of Environment, Volume 184, October 2016, Pages 124-138, ISSN 0034-4257, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.rse.2016.05.006. (//www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0034425716301997)

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