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The Cryosphere An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-2020-151
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-2020-151
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

  03 Aug 2020

03 Aug 2020

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A revised version of this preprint was accepted for the journal TC and is expected to appear here in due course.

Surface-Based Ku- and Ka-band Polarimetric Radar for Sea Ice Studies

Julienne Stroeve1,2,3, Vishnu Nandan1, Rosemary Willatt2, Rasmus Tonboe4, Stefan Hendricks5, Robert Ricker5, James Mead6, Marcus Huntemann5,7, Polona Itkin8, Martin Schneebeli9, Daniela Krampe5, Gunnar Spreen7, Jeremy Wilkinson10, Ilkka Matero5, Mario Hoppmann5, Robbie Mallett2, and Michel Tsamados2 Julienne Stroeve et al.
  • 1University of Manitoba, Centre for Earth Observation Science, 535 Wallace Building, Winnipeg, MB, R3T 2N2, Canada
  • 2University College London, Earth Science Department, Gower Street, WC1E 6BT, UK
  • 3National Snow and Ice Data Center, University of Colorado, 1540 30thStreet, Boulder, CO 80302, USA
  • 4Danish Meteorological Institute, Lyngbyvej 100, 2100 Copenhagen, Denmark
  • 5Alfred Wegener Institute, Am Handelshafen 12, 27570 Bremerhaven, Germany
  • 6ProSensing, 107 Sunderland Road, Amherst, MA, 01002-1357, USA
  • 7Institute of Environmental Physics, University of Bremen, Otto-Hahn-Allee 1, 28359 Bremen, Germany
  • 8UiT The Arctic University of Norway, Department of Physics and Technology, Tromsø, 9019, Norway
  • 9WSL Institute for Snow and Avalanche Research SLF, Fluelastrasse 11, 7260 Davos Dorf, Switzerland
  • 10British Antarctic Survey, High Cross, Madingley Road, Cambridge, CB30ET, UK

Abstract. To improve our understanding of how snow properties influence sea ice thickness retrievals from presently operational and upcoming satellite radar altimeter missions, as well as investigating the potential for combining dual frequencies to simultaneously map snow depth and sea ice thickness, a new, surface-based, fully-polarimetric Ku- and Ka-band radar (KuKa radar) was built and deployed during the 2019–2020 year-long MOSAiC International Arctic drift expedition. This instrument, built to operate both as an altimeter (stare mode) and a scatterometer (scanning mode), provided the first in situ Ku- and Ka-band dual frequency radar observations from autumn freeze-up through mid-winter, and covering newly formed ice in leads, first-year and second-year ice floes. Data gathered in the altimeter mode, will be used to investigate the potential for estimating snow depth as the difference between dominant radar scattering horizons in the Ka- and Ku-band data. In the scatterometer mode, the Ku- and Ka-band radars operated under a wide range of azimuth and incidence angle ranges, continuously assessing changes in the polarimetric radar backscatter and derived polarimetric parameters, as snow properties varied under varying atmospheric conditions. These observations allow for characterizing radar backscatter responses to changes in atmospheric and surface geophysical conditions. In this paper, we describe the KuKa radar and illustrate examples of these data and demonstrate their potential for these investigations.

Julienne Stroeve et al.

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Julienne Stroeve et al.

Julienne Stroeve et al.

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Latest update: 26 Nov 2020
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Short summary
This study provides the first look of the data collected by a new dual frequency Ka/Ku-band in situ radar over winter sea ice in the Arctic Ocean. Instrument shows potential to use both bands to retrieve snow depth over sea ice, as well as sensitivity of the measurements to changing snow and atmospheric conditions.
This study provides the first look of the data collected by a new dual frequency Ka/Ku-band in...
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