Minutes of the splinter session on "Campaigns"
By
Niels Skou, TUD

During the 2'nd SMOS workshop a brief splinter session on campaign issues was carried out. The following points were discussed:
 

1. The SAG working document "SMOS Campaigns Requirements"was distributed to the workshop members at the onset of the workshop. Comments were solicited - both in plenum and during this splinter session - but very few specific issues were raised. One comment came up about better and clearer statement of goals and requirements for planned campaigns. Anyway, the document served a seeding purpose for the general discussions
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2. Campaigns of relevance to SMOS are carried out both in Europe and in the US. It was emphasized that some coordination would seem of relevance. The level of interaction across the Atlantic could range from direct cooperation / coordination in some cases to merely making sure that information and results flows freely. In short: we must at least make sure that we are informed about what goes on.

3. It has been noted that we are in need of an airborne, imaging L-band radiometer in Europe. The possibility of acquiring a commercially available instrument - the SLFMR from Quadrant - was discussed. It was decided that the company be approached for a quote concerning price and delivery schedule.

4. It was reported that an SLFMR instrument is going to Australia to monitor fresh water outflow into reef areas. This gave rise to a discussion about what campaign work of interest to us could be ongoing / upcoming in Australia. Jacqueline Etcheto and Lester Simmons were charged with the task of finding relevant information and report back

5. The possibility of having a US SLFMR coming over to Europe for campaign work was discussed. This is certainly a possibility, but cost is an issue. For practical and economic reasons that would require the P3 on which the instrument is already mounted to come over. In order to justify the high cost of the transit flight that would require a major, concerted European campaign. Also, the campaign might be planned to coincide with a possible US campaign in the Greenland area.

6. The question was raised whether it would be useful to include in the "SMOS Campaigns Requirements" document a list of US (and other) campaigns. It was decided that Gary Lagerloef should provide a list of ocean campaigns. Land campaigns could be provided by a new appointed US associate to the SAG concerning land issues.

7. It was noted that for the planning of experiments it should be considered to, in advance, request data from for example ERS-2.

8. Modeling of the ocean is a problem to be dealt with. Tank measurements of wave spectra and L-band brightness temperatures are warranted, but it require open air tanks (pool) in order to carry out radiometric measurements.

9. RFI is a major unsolved problem: no one really knows how bad the situation is. A simple RFI mission on Space Station could be proposed.

10. It was stated, that the time where the cryosphere campaign plans should begin entering the "SMOS Campaigns Requirements" document is nearing.

11. Long term observations of the sea surface with L-band radiometers might be feasible and relatively cheap from bridges. The sea will not represent open ocean conditions, but it might be worth while anyway.

12. LOSAC 2001 will provide a few flights over the North Sea during winter, and over the Mediterranean during autumn. Further typical conditions like the North Atlantic should be covered in future campaigns. Proper sea truth can be expensive, and a cost effective way is to use data from existing weather stations like on certain oil platforms (as we do in the North Sea during LOSAC 2001). A possibility is Norwegian oil platforms in the Atlantic positioned where the sea depth exceed 1000 m. Also some weather ships are available. Finally, certain research vessel transects are carried out as part of other research and monitoring activities.

13. The session group urged the SAG to advise ESA to make sufficient - i.e. more - funding available for airborne campaigns.
 

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