SMAP successfully launched today

Category : Commissioning phase, Data, Satellite


At 6:20 am (pacific time) this morning a Delta launch put successfully the SMAP mission (and several cubesats by the same token) into orbit.

Separation went smoothly as well as solar panels deployment (seen live on video!) Some pictures should be loaded here soon

So after more than five years in orbit SMOS has a new L Band radiometer companion to estimate also soil moisture.

SMAP will now undergo the commissioning phase the deployment of the antenna and after we should have soon even more soil moisture data to study and use. Lots of exciting science to do!

I believe we can warmly thank the project team, launch crew and operation team for an outstanding result

Performance Monitor (bis)

Category : Cal/Val, Commissioning phase, Data, L1, L2

Now you can use interactive plots to zoom and pan to a subset of the retrieval performances plots. These are also updated daily here

Use mouse wheel or double click to zoom

Performance monitor & Products versions

Category : Cal/Val, Commissioning phase, Data, L1, L2, Non classé

The version and performance monitor for SMOS brightness temperature and soil moisture products is back on track.
Those plots are updated daily. The version monitor shows the latest (most up-to-date) dataset available for users based on the local CESBIO downloaded dataset. check for this by clicking on Perf. Monitor
1. – Example plots for version and configuration monitoring:
1.1 – Version of latest datasets :

1.2 – An example of acquisition and processing configurations :
Notice in the first plot the switching between Dual and Full mode during commissioning phase. Second and third plots are the delay in days of the used anciliary input file for optical thickness and Leaf area index.

all version and configuration plots are available here
2. – Example plots for performance monitor :
2.1 – L1C Brightness temperature processors :

2.2 – Soil moisture retrievals over soil cover:
-Number and percentage of successful retrievals over soil & low vegetation cover for the L2 Soil moisture processor. The colors indicate different richness of retrievals (R3 richer than R2). Richness depend on parameters like . A richer retrieval means higher number of retrieved parameters (see SMOS L2 Soilk Moisture ATBD)

all performance plots are available here.

SMOS Workshop in Arles on September 27-29, 2011

Category : CATDS, Cal/Val, Commissioning phase, Data, L1, L2

The French Space Agency (CNES) and the European Space Agency are jointly organising a first workshop on 27-29 September in Arles, France, to provide scientists and data users with the opportunity to present results from their research activities exploiting data from the SMOS mission.

The workshop will address both SMOS calibration and validation activities as well as research activities. Further details can be found on

  • The main objectives of the workshop are to: Provide a forum for scientific exchange and to assess the state-of-art in soil moisture and ocean salinity retrieval as well as cryosphere topic
  • Assess the state-of-art for soil moisture and ocean salinity retrievals, as well as cryospheric applications
  • Initiate and encourage close collaboration between individual research groups
  • Demonstrate novel applications of fully-polarimetric interferometric radiometer data
  • Inform data users about instrument performance, processing status, product quality and data access
  • Provide an opportunity to interact and study synergies with related missions (Aquarius, SMAP, AMSR-E)
  • Update on the status of the calibration and validation activities for the SMOS data products

The deadlines are

Submission of Abstracts 13 May 2011
Extended abstract submission deadline 20 May 2011
Notifications of Acceptance 31 May 2011
Issue of Preliminary Programme 14 June 2011
Registration 30 June 2011
Submission of Full Paper 16 September 2011
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