WP2 - Observational systems based on remote sensing data

The RITMARE Remote Sensing Observing System is strengthening and extending the capabilities of the Mediterranean satellite observing system to meet the new challenges in the field of physical, biogeochemical and biological marine sciences. Starting from pre-existing systems, the SP5-WP2 Partners designed and developed an Integrated Remote Sensing Observing System able to provide access to the space and non-space remote sensing data and products.

The Mediterranean satellite observation system for sea surface temperature and ocean colour has been updated to process data from new sensors (eg. VIIRS) and to include SST products resolving the diurnal cycle and biological parameters, such as phytoplankton size classes and phytoplankton carbon biomass. The scatterometer component has been integrated into system to provide access to satellite wind fields. A subsystem capable to process SAR imagery (ERS, Envisat, Radarsat, Cosmo/SkyMed) has been developed to provide wind, currents and coastline deformation products.

An Italian integrated coastal radar system had been implemented by networking all the national systems. Two innovative instruments based on remote sensing technologies have been developed to provide continuous measurements from offshore platforms and/or research vessels: a LIDAR system able to measure chlorophyll and CDOM and an optical system for measuring the wave-motion. These new instruments were tested during several oceanographic cruises carried out in the Mediterranean Sea during the Project lifetime. SP5-WP2 designed and is now developing a calibration system to provide continuous radiometric measurements for Ocean Colour sensors (eg. VIIRS and OLCI).

The RITMARE Remote Sensing portal (http://ritmare.artov.isac.cnr.it/thredds/catalog.html), interfaced with the RITMARE web portal (SP7), provides access to near real time and long time series of satellite and coastal radar data. Presently includes: SST, OC, wind data produced by CNR ISAC; HF radar data produced by CNR-ISMAR and University of Parthenope.

The Italian coastal radar Network

Satellite estimates of the Phytoplankton Carbon Biomass over the Mediterranean Sea in April 2005 (left image); monthly time series Phytoplankton size classes (Pico, Nano and micro plankton) over the North Adriatic Sea  (right image)

Radial surface current field retrieved after image processing (left); Cosmo Sky Med imagery over the Venice lagoon with ECMWF winds (right).