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Experimental Investigation of Ocean Wave Measurement Using Short-Range K-Band Radar: Dock-Based and Boat-Based Wind Wave Measurements

1
Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, Memorial University, St. John’s, NL A1B 3X5, Canada
2
MARUM, University of Bremen, 28359 Bremen, Germany
3
Department of Physics and Physical Oceanography, Memorial University, St. John’s, NL A1B 3X7, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Remote Sens. 2019, 11(13), 1607; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs11131607
Received: 21 May 2019 / Revised: 4 July 2019 / Accepted: 4 July 2019 / Published: 6 July 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Remote Sensing)
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Abstract

In this paper, an ocean wave measurement technique and a newly developed short-range K-band radar are tested. In previous work, the technique and its feasibility were studied based on numerical simulations and wave tank experiments, while its performance at sea was still unknown. Surface current, Stokes drift, and wave breaking can greatly complicate interpreting radar backscatters. The feasibility of the technique needed to be further investigated with sea experiments. Experiments were carried out at a stationary site and from a moving platform. The short-range K-band radar transmitted continuous wave and received backscatters at low-grazing angles. The Bragg-scattering from the radar’s effective footprint dominated the backscatters. The Doppler shift frequency of the Bragg-scattering was attributed to the phase velocity of Bragg waves and modulated by the surface motions induced by current, Stokes drift, platform, and gravity waves. These sources of the Doppler shift frequency were analyzed, and the components induced by wind waves were successfully retrieved and converted into wave spectra that were consistent with the measurements of wave rider buoy. The experimental investigation further validated the feasibility of using short-range K-band radar to measure ocean waves. View Full-Text
Keywords: wind wave measurement; short-range K-band radar; effective footprint; Bragg-scattering; sea spikes; platform motion compensation wind wave measurement; short-range K-band radar; effective footprint; Bragg-scattering; sea spikes; platform motion compensation
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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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Cui, J.; Bachmayer, R.; de Young, B.; Huang, W. Experimental Investigation of Ocean Wave Measurement Using Short-Range K-Band Radar: Dock-Based and Boat-Based Wind Wave Measurements. Remote Sens. 2019, 11, 1607.

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