SMOS brings Mediterranean salinity into focus
11 May 2017
ESA's SMOS mission maps variations in soil moisture and salt in the surface waters of the open oceans. When the satellite was designed, it was not envisaged that it would be able to measure salinity in smaller seas like the Mediterranean, but SMOS has again surpassed expectations.
The satellite carries a microwave instrument to capture images of ‘brightness temperature', which correspond to microwave radiation emitted from Earth's surface and can be related to soil moisture and ocean salinity.While this information is fulfilling the mission's core objective of improving our understanding of Earth's water cycle, SMOS has found a multitude of other uses such as tracking hurricanes, measuring thin ice floating in the polar oceans and improving crop-yield forecasts.
Top story on Copernicus
08 November 2017
A constellation of small satellites that provide data on Earth's ice and soil moisture content to complement the Sentinel fleet took the top prize at this year's Copernicus Masters Competition.
The awards ceremony took place on 07 November, in Tallinn, Estonia, in front of an international audience during European Space Week as part of the Satellite Masters Conference & Horizon 2020 Space Info Day.
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