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Fifteen Years of Cal/Val Service to Reference Altimetry Missions: Calibration of Satellite Altimetry at the Permanent Facilities in Gavdos and Crete, Greece
Open AccessArticle

Absolute Calibration of the European Sentinel-3A Surface Topography Mission over the Permanent Facility for Altimetry Calibration in west Crete, Greece

1
Geodesy and Geomatics Engineering Laboratory, Technical University of Crete, GR-73100 Chania, Greece
2
European Space Agency/European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESA/ESTEC), Keplerlaan 1, 2201 AZ Noordwijk, The Netherlands
3
European Space Agency/European Space Research Institute (ESA/ESRIN), Via Galileo Galilei, I-00044 Frascati, Italy
4
Space Geomatica P.C., Xanthoudidou 10A, GR-73132 Chania, Greece
5
Department of Geodesy and Surveying, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, University Box 440, 54124 Thessaloniki, Greece
6
Centre National d’ Etudes Spatiales (CNES), 31401 Toulouse, CEDEX, France
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Remote Sens. 2018, 10(11), 1808; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs10111808
Received: 20 October 2018 / Accepted: 13 November 2018 / Published: 15 November 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Radar Remote Sensing of Oceans and Coastal Areas)
This work presents calibration results for the altimeter of Sentinel-3A Surface Topography Mission as determined at the Permanent Facility for Altimetry Calibration in west Crete, Greece. The facility has been providing calibration services for more than 15 years for all past (i.e., Envisat, Jason-1, Jason-2, SARAL/AltiKa, HY-2A) and current (i.e., Sentinel-3A, Sentinel-3B, Jason-3) satellite altimeters. The groundtrack of the Pass No.14 of Sentinel-3A ascends west of the Gavdos island and continues north to the transponder site on the mountains of west Crete. This pass has been calibrated using three independent techniques activated at various sites in the region: (1) the transponder approach for its range bias, (2) the sea-surface method for the estimation of altimeter bias for its sea-surface heights, and (c) the cross-over analysis for inspecting height observations with respect to Jason-3. The other Pass No.335 of Sentinel-3A descends from southwest of Crete to south and intersects the Gavdos calibration site. Additionally, calibration values for this descending pass are presented, applying sea-surface calibration and crossover analysis. An uncertainty analysis for the altimeter biases derived by the transponder and by sea-surface calibrations is also introduced following the new standard of Fiducial Reference Measurements. View Full-Text
Keywords: satellite altimetry; calibration; Sentinel-3A; transponder; sea surface; Crete satellite altimetry; calibration; Sentinel-3A; transponder; sea surface; Crete
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Mertikas, S.; Donlon, C.; Féménias, P.; Mavrocordatos, C.; Galanakis, D.; Tripolitsiotis, A.; Frantzis, X.; Kokolakis, C.; Tziavos, I.N.; Vergos, G.; Guinle, T. Absolute Calibration of the European Sentinel-3A Surface Topography Mission over the Permanent Facility for Altimetry Calibration in west Crete, Greece. Remote Sens. 2018, 10, 1808.

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