Satellites bouncing thousands of radar pulses per second off Earth's surface and recording how long they take to return to orbit is a tried and tested method of charting the contours of our planet.
A variety of parameters may be inferred via radar altimeter measurements, including sea surface height and ocean topography, the lateral extent of sea ice and the altitude of large icebergs above sea-level, the topography of land and ice sheets and even that of the sea floor - the shape of the sea surface influenced by seafloor bathymetry.
Satellite altimetry also provides useful information for mapping sea surface wind speeds and significant wave heights. Precision ocean altimetry applications for sea level monitoring and ocean circulation studies are possible through by independent measurements of the geoid.
CryoVExGround (2011) campaign data is now available to the user community.
A consolidated dataset of three NoSREx (Nordic Snow Radar Experiment) campaigns is now available to the user community: