THIN ICE AREA EXTRACTION IN THE SEASONAL SEA ICE ZONES OF THE NORTHERN HEMISPHERE USING ASMR2 DATA
Keywords: sea ice, passive microwave radiometer, global warming, GCOM-W
Abstract. Sea ice has an important role of reflecting the solar radiation back into space. In addition, the heat flux of ice in thin ice areas is strongly affected by the ice thickness difference. Therefore, ice thickness is one of the most important parameters of sea ice. In our previous study, the authors have developed a thin ice area extraction algorithm using passive microwave radiometer AMSR2 for the Sea of Okhotsk. The basic idea of the algorithm is to use the brightness temperature scatter plots of AMSR2 19 GHz polarization on difference (V-H) vs 19 GHz V polarization. The algorithm was also applicable to the Bering Sea, and could extract most of the thin n ice areas. However, two problems have become clear. One was that some of the thin ice areas were not well extracted, and the other was that some of the consolidated ice were mis-extracted as thin ice areas. In this study, the authors have improved the thin ice area extraction algorithm to solve these problems. By adjusting the parameters of the algorithm applied to the brightness temperature scatter plots of AMSR2 19 GHz polarization difference (V-H) vs 19 GHz V polarization, most of the thin ice areas were also well extracted in the Bering Sea. The authors also introduced an equation using the brightness temperatures difference of 89GHz vertical and horizontal polarization to reject the thin ice area misextracted over consolidated ice. By applying the above two methods to AMSR2 data, most of the thin ice areas in the Bering Sea were well extracted. The algorithm was also applied to the Gulf of St. Lawrence with good result. The thin ice area extracted data are planed to be approved by JAXA as a AMSR2 research product.