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CryoVEx 2016 (Spring)


blue arrow OVERVIEW

View of the Arctic from a Twin Otter aircraft
View of the Arctic from a Twin Otter aircraft

What was the purpose of CryoVEx 2016 (Spring)?

The 2016 airborne campaign was conducted during 4‐16 April 2016, with the ESA airborne Ku‐band interferometric radar (ASIRAS), coincident airborne laser scanner (ALS) and vertical photography. It was partly funded by ESA CryoSat‐2 Validation Experiment (CryoVEx) and partly by EU FP7 project on Ice, Climate, Economics – Arctic Research on Change (ICE‐ARC). As the same aircraft and instrument installation were used for both campaigns this report includes both the CryoVEx and ICE‐ARC campaign data.

The ESA CryoVEx 2016 campaign was primarily carried out to follow up on a recommendation given within ESA CryoVal Land Ice project (2014-2015), where it was found that the traditional under-flights of the Cryosat-2 satellite were inadequate. This is primarily due to uncertainties in the radar-echo location (POCA) due to topography. To account for this effect, the 2016 ESA CryoVEx airborne campaign was aimed at flying dense grids of parallel lines at Austfonna ice cap along CryoSat-2 ground tracks, to cover a broad range of possible POCA locations from different retrackers (CryoVal-LI D4).

The ICE-ARC campaign was mainly used to repeat some previously flown sea ice flights into the Wandel Sea and the Fram Strait, which had partly failed in 2015 due to problems with the ALS logging system. The opportunity was taken to make the first Sentinel-3A under-flight over sea ice in Fram Strait.

What was the outcome of CryoVEx 2016 (Spring)?

The CryoVEx/ICE‐ARC 2016 campaign was a success and the processed data is of high quality. Preliminary comparisons between CryoSat‐2 and ALS data at Austfonna ice cap, proves the concept of using a gridded ALS data set of lines parallel to CryoSat‐2 ground tracks in areas with varying topography. First direct comparisons of Sentinel‐3A and ALS also show consistent results.


Download the CryoVEx/ICE-ARC 2016 Final Report

Campaign Summary
Year March and April 2016
Geographic Site Arctic
Field of Application Sea-land ice radar altimetry and laser scanner
Data Size 2.18 GB

Digital Object Identifier: - CryoVEx 2016 (Spring): "Airborne field campaign with ASIRAS radar and laser scanner over Austfonna, Fram Strait and the Wandel Sea "

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