SMOS RSE special issue deadline postponed

Category : Cal/Val, Data, L1, L2, L3, L4, Model, Ocean, ground measurements

Dear colleague,

With regards to your potential contribution to the Special Issue on SMOS in Remote Sensing of Environment, we would like to notify you that the deadline for full paper submissions has been extended until 31st July 2015. Please be aware that this deadline change is final and no exceptions will be allowed after this date.

In case you have already submitted your paper, please disregard this message.

To submit your paper, please go to and select the option ‘submit paper’ from the menu bar near the upper left corner of the page. During the submission process, please make sure to select ‘SMOS 5 Years’ in the dropdown menu when choosing the article type, as demonstrated in the attached image.

Accepted papers will be published online as soon as possible following a final editing procedure by the Publisher. Once again, we encourage you to critically check your list of authors against the RSE guidelines on authorship ( to ensure appropriate representation of effort.

We look forward to receiving your contributions.

Yours sincerely,
Susanne Mecklenburg
On behalf of the editors for the Special Issue on SMOS in RSE

Earth Observation for Water Cycle Science 2015

Category : Data, Model

The Earth Observation for Water Cycle Science 2015will take place on October 20-23 2015
at ESA-ESRIN (Frascati, Italy)

Deadline: 30 April 2015


Five years ago, ESA, GEWEX, and EGU organized the first EO for Water Cycle Science Conference at ESA-ESRIN. For the 2015 Conference, we are again planning for a wide discussion and networking forum for the water and energy, climate, hydrology, modeling, and EO communities to review the latest advances in the use of EO for water cycle science and discuss the main scientific opportunities and research challenges for the future.

The objectives of this topical conference, jointly organized by ESA and GEWEX, are:

  • Review the latest contributions of EO to water cycle science and related processes understanding, and identify the main scientific challenges for the future.
  • Assess the advances in water cycle satellite observations, their uncertainties and consistency (e.g., precipitation, clouds, water vapor, soil moisture, water levels, surface water, and groundwater measurements as well as land and ocean heat fluxes and the Earth radiation budget).
  • Identify novel and enhanced satellite-based geophysical data sets, algorithms and methods necessary to ensure an accurate and consistent characterization of the water cycle.
  • Identify current gaps in observations and review emerging mission concepts and novel observational principles that may lead to future satellite observation systems.
  • Assess the main needs in modeling and data assimilation of EO-based observations to improve our knowledge of the water cycle science and our ability to quantify future changes in water cycle, extreme events and hydrological hazards.
  • Consolidate a scientific roadmap outlining the main priorities for the future.

On behalf of the organizing committee, I invite you to participate and contribute to this conference.

Please submit your abstracts before the 30th April 2015 using the dedicated link in the conference web site (

Diego Fenandez Prieto (ESA)
Graeme Stephens (NASA)
Michael Rast (ESA)
Peter van Oevelen (GEWEX)
Sonia Seneviratne (ETH-Zurich)

MARK your Calendars !!

Category : CATDS, Cal/Val, Data, L1, L2, L3, L4, Model, Ocean, Satellite, Training

The 2nd SMOS SCIENCE CONFERENCE (25-29 May 2015) and the SMOS TRAINING COURSE (18-22 May 2015) will take place at ESA-ESAC, near Madrid (Spain).

For further information on both events please see

The deadline for submission of abstracts for the SMOS science conference and applications for the SMOS training course is 16 January 2015.

The 2nd SMOS Science Conference will be jointly organised by ESA, CNES and SMOS-MODE.

By 2015, the SMOS mission will have been in orbit for more than five years, providing a continuous stream of high quality data products. Being a water cycle mission, SMOS observations have been used by rather distinct science communities addressing oceanography, land surface hydrology, and meteorology over a wide range of applications. The focus of this conference will deviate from previous events in that the emphasis will be on applications of SMOS data, including operational services, the development of novel data products, the synergistic use of SMOS data with other data sources and the potential of SMOS data for the generation of long-term data sets. The workshop will also cover common themes such as the quality of the Level 1 data products and calibration and validation activities.

The 2nd SMOS Science Conference will be preceded by a SMOS Training Course on 18-22 May 2015, organised by CESBIO and held as well at the ESA-ESAC premises near Madrid. The course will provide an opportunity to learn how to work with level 1 (brightness temperature) and level 2 (soil moisture and ocean salinity) data provided by the SMOS mission. The deadline for applications is 16 January. To submit your applications please go to –> Training Course and use the link on the bottom of the page.

SMOS and « La Niña » signature….

Category : CATDS, L2, Model, Ocean, Satellite

Analyzing the 2010-2011 La Niña signature in the tropical Pacific sea surface salinity using in situ data, SMOS observations and a numerical simulation

Audrey Hasson(1, *), Thierry Delcroix(1), Jacqueline Boutin(2),

Raphael Dussin(3), Joaquim Ballabrera-Poy(4)

The tropical Pacific Ocean remained in a La Niña phase from mid 2010 to mid-2012. The near-surface salinity signature of this cold El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) phase is shown in the figure below and analysed in Hasson et. al (2014) using a combination of numerical model output, in situ data and SMOS satellite salinity products.

boutin-la nina

Figure: Sea Surface Salinity anomalies relative to each product 2010-2011 monthly climatology (pss) in July 2010 (left panels) and July 2011 (right panels) for (a, d) ISAS in situ product (b, e) SMOS and (c, f) the model. Blue lines represent the Voluntary Observing Ship routes and the 170°E-180° hatched areas computation zones. (Figure from Hasson et al., 2014)

Comparisons of all salinity products show a good agreement between them, with a RMS error of 0.2-0.3 between the thermosalinograph (TSG) and SMOS data and between the TSG and model data. The last 6 months of 2010 (La Niña) are characterized by an unusually strong tri-polar anomaly captured by the three salinity products in the western half of the tropical Pacific. A positive SSS anomaly sits north of 10ºS (>0.5), a negative tilted anomaly lies between 10ºS and 20ºS and a positive one south of 20ºS. In 2011, anomalies shift south and amplify up to 0.8, except for the one south of 20ºS. Equatorial SSS changes are mainly the result of anomalous zonal advection, resulting in negative anomalies during El Niño (early 2010), and positive ones thereafter during La Niña. The mean seasonal and interannual poleward drift then exports those anomalies toward the south in the southern hemisphere, resulting in the aforementioned tripolar anomaly. The vertical salinity flux at the bottom of the mixed layer tends to resist the surface salinity changes. The observed basin-scale La Niña SSS signal is then compared in Hasson et al. (2014) with the historical 1998-1999 La Niña event using both observations and modelling.

for more details see Hasson, A., T. Delcroix, J. Boutin, R. Dussin, and J. Ballabrera-Poy (2014), Analyzing the 2010–2011 La Niña signature in the tropical Pacific sea surface salinity using in situ data, SMOS observations, and a numerical simulation, Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 119(6), 3855-3867, doi:10.1002/2013JC009388.

(1) LEGOS, UMR 5566, CNES, CNRS, IRD, Université de Toulouse 14 avenue Edouard Belin, 31400 Toulouse, France

(2) LOCEAN, UMR7159, CNRS, UPMC, IRD, MNHN, Paris, France

(3) LEGI, Grenoble, France

(4) ICM/CSIC, Barcelona, Spain

(*) Corresponding author, Currently at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory,California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California, USA

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