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Open AccessTechnical Note

Removal of Covariant Errors from Altimetric Wave Height Data

EOSA, Plymouth Marine Laboratory, Plymouth PL1 3DH, UK
Remote Sens. 2019, 11(19), 2319; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs11192319
Received: 2 September 2019 / Revised: 27 September 2019 / Accepted: 3 October 2019 / Published: 5 October 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Ocean Remote Sensing)
The echo waveforms received by conventional radar altimeters are interpreted by retracking algorithms to give estimates of range, wave height, and backscatter strength. However, in response to fading noise on the waveform leading edge, common retrackers, such as MLE-3 and MLE-4, show correlated errors in wave height and range. This correlation is used to develop a correction to the wave height data that reduces the high-frequency variability by ∼22%, without affecting the global distribution of values. This correction also results in a closer matchup of Jason-2 and Jason-3 data during their tandem phase. Although the correction is quite straightforward in practice, the appropriate conversion factor has to be determined for each combination of altimeter and retracker. There are also remaining open questions concerning the needed low-pass filtering. View Full-Text
Keywords: altimeter retracking; significant wave height; covariant errors; variability; fading noise; error reduction; Jason-3; AltiKa altimeter retracking; significant wave height; covariant errors; variability; fading noise; error reduction; Jason-3; AltiKa
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MDPI and ACS Style

Quartly, G.D. Removal of Covariant Errors from Altimetric Wave Height Data. Remote Sens. 2019, 11, 2319.

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