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Remote Sens. 2014, 6(11), 10913-10930; doi:10.3390/rs61110913

Emissivity Measurements of Foam-Covered Water Surface at L-Band for Low Water Temperatures

1,* , 1,2,†
Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Qingdao 266071, China
University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100039, China
Centre for Space Science and Applied Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100190, China
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 June 2014 / Revised: 22 September 2014 / Accepted: 4 November 2014 / Published: 7 November 2014
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1992 KB, uploaded 7 November 2014]   |  


For a foam-covered sea surface, it is difficult to retrieve sea surface salinity (SSS) with L-band brightness temperature (1.4 GHz) because of the effect of a foam layer with wind speeds stronger than 7 m/s, especially at low sea surface temperature (SST). With foam-controlled experiments, emissivities of a foam-covered water surface at low SST (−1.4 °C to 1.7 °C) are measured for varying SSS, foam thickness, incidence angle, and polarization. Furthermore, a theoretical model of emissivity is introduced by combining wave approach theory with the effective medium approximation method. Good agreement is obtained upon comparing theoretical emissivities with those of experiments. The results indicate that foam parameters have a strong influence on increasing emissivity of a foam-covered water surface. Increments of experimental emissivities caused by foam thickness of 1 cm increase from about 0.014 to 0.131 for horizontal polarization and 0.022 to 0.150 for vertical polarization with SSS increase and SST decrease. Contributions of the interface between the foam layer and water surface to the foam layer emissivity increments are discussed for frequencies between 1 and 37 GHz. View Full-Text
Keywords: sea foam layer; microwave emissivity; L-band; sea surface salinity and temperature sea foam layer; microwave emissivity; L-band; sea surface salinity and temperature

Figure 1

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Wei, E.-B.; Liu, S.-B.; Wang, Z.-Z.; Tong, X.-L.; Dong, S.; Li, B.; Liu, J.-Y. Emissivity Measurements of Foam-Covered Water Surface at L-Band for Low Water Temperatures. Remote Sens. 2014, 6, 10913-10930.

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