Composite front maps for improved visibility of dynamic sea-surface features on cloudy SeaWiFS and AVHRR data

Miller, PI 2009 Composite front maps for improved visibility of dynamic sea-surface features on cloudy SeaWiFS and AVHRR data. Journal of Marine Systems, 78. 327 - 336.

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Novel techniques have been developed for increasing the value of cloud-affected sequences of Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) sea-surface temperature (SST) data and Sea-viewing Wide Field-of-view Sensor (SeaWiFS) ocean colour data for visualising dynamic physical and biological oceanic processes such as fronts, eddies and blooms. The proposed composite front map approach is to combine the location, strength and persistence of all fronts observed over several days into a single map, which allows intuitive interpretation of mesoscale structures. This method achieves a synoptic view without blurring dynamic features, an inherent problem with conventional time-averaging compositing methods. Objective validation confirms a significant improvement in feature visibility on composite maps compared to individual front maps. A further novel aspect is the automated detection of ocean colour fronts, correctly locating 96% of chlorophyll fronts in a test data set. A sizeable data set of 13,000 AVHRR and 1200 SeaWiFS scenes automatically processed using this technique is applied to the study of dynamic processes off the Iberian Peninsula such as mesoscale eddy generation, and many additional applications are identified. Front map animations provide a unique insight into the evolution of upwelling and eddies.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Additional Keywords: Oceanic fronts, Mesoscale features, Ocean colour
Subjects: Earth Observation - Remote Sensing
Divisions: Plymouth Marine Laboratory > Science Areas > Sea from Space (expired)
Depositing User: Dr Peter I Miller
Date made live: 07 Jul 2014 10:13
Last Modified: 06 Jun 2017 16:12

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