The wind speed is the SRAL derived surface wind speed modulus over ocean.
The SENTINEL-3 mission is able to monitor wind speed from 0 to 20 m/s.
The SENTINEL-3 mission wind speed goal accuracy is 2 m/s for Near Real-Time (NRT) products and 1.5 m/s for Slow Time Critical (STC) products.
The SRAL instrument provides estimates of wind speed through relatively well understood geophysical inversion algorithms, based on peak backscattered power and the shape of waveforms.
Figure 1: Wind Speed (m/s) Over Ocean Using CRYOSAT Data from November 17th to December 13th 2011 (Credit: NOAA)
The wind information (surface wind speed modulus) product is a critical product for all maritime safety and rescue operations.
Figure 2: Wind Speed (km/h) Measured by ENVISAT, JASON-1 and JASON-2 Missions Close to Hurricane Earl, August 31st 2010 (Credit: AVISO)