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Validation of MERIS Level 2 Products on the Apulian Coastal Areas

V. De Pasquale(1), R. Matarrese(2), G. Pasquariello(1) and M.T. Chiaradia(2)

(1) CNR-ISSIA, Via G. Amendola 122, 70126 Bari, Italy
(2) University of Bari, Dept. of Physics, Via G. Amendola 173, 70126 Bari, Italy


The main objective of IMCA (Integrated Monitoring of Coastal Area) project is the development of a prototype tool to monitoring water quality in coastal zones, by periodic thematic maps produced integrating satellite and in situ data. The areas of interest are located in the south-east of Italy in the region of Apulia. In this region, three sites have been selected:

1) Taranto seas on the Ionian Sea; this site is characterized by a strong human activity for the presence of important industrial settlements with an high traffic commercial port and a base of Italian Military Marine.

2) Manfredonia and estuarine of Ofanto river on the Adriatic sea; the waters of this area are very turbid due to the presence of the river and for some industrial settlements near Manfredonia;

3) Tremiti islands on the Adriatic sea; this area is an important marine protected area characterized by clear waters conditions.

In the framework of project an important set of in situ measurements has been done. For each site, two sets of data have been collected. The first one is derived from measurements made during periodic cruise. In each cruise water samples have been collected and laboratory measurements of water quality parameters and their inherent optical properties have been performed. Moreover a set of radiometric measurements have been collected. This measurements consist of in downwelling irradiance above water, and in water profiles of downwelling irradiance, upwelling radiance, fluorimetric chlorophyll-a concentration, temperature and other ancillary quantity. These measurements are performed using a Satlantic Profile II, free fall profiler at which the OCR-507 I and OCR-507 R radiometers are connected. The second dataset consists of measurements made in continuous mode by three buoys deployed at 3 m deep in the three sites. The buoys measure, every hour, the chlorophyll concentration, and other marine geophysical parameters. The aim of this paper is the validation of the MERIS algal I and algal II and atmospheric corrected reflectance level 2 products. A comparison between the MERIS products and the in situ measurements has shown, as well as the temporal series of chlorophyll concentrations measured by the buoy and the one retrieved from MERIS data. The MERIS data used for this study were provided by ESA within the CAT-1 project n. 3456: "Test cases for calibration and validation of MERIS images in coastal waters".


Keywords: ESA European Space Agency - Agence spatiale europeenne, observation de la terre, earth observation, satellite remote sensing, teledetection, geophysique, altimetrie, radar, chimique atmospherique, geophysics, altimetry, radar, atmospheric chemistry