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SEASTAR: A mission to study ocean submesoscale dynamics and small-scale atmosphere-ocean processes in coastal, shelf and polar seas

SEASTAR: A mission to study ocean submesoscale dynamics and small-scale atmosphere-ocean processes in coastal, shelf and polar seas
SEASTAR: A mission to study ocean submesoscale dynamics and small-scale atmosphere-ocean processes in coastal, shelf and polar seas
High-resolution satellite images of ocean color and sea surface temperature reveal an abundance of ocean fronts, vortices and filaments at scales below 10 km but measurements of ocean surface dynamics at these scales are rare. There is increasing recognition of the role played by small scale ocean processes in ocean-atmosphere coupling, upper-ocean mixing and ocean vertical transports, with advanced numerical models and in situ observations highlighting fundamental changes in dynamics when scales reach 1 km. Numerous scientific publications highlight the global impact of small oceanic scales on marine ecosystems, operational forecasts and long-term climate projections through strong ageostrophic circulations, large vertical ocean velocities and mixed layer re-stratification. Small-scale processes particularly dominate in coastal, shelf and polar seas where they mediate important exchanges between land, ocean, atmosphere and the cryosphere, e.g., freshwater, pollutants. As numerical models continue to evolve toward finer spatial resolution and increasingly complex coupled atmosphere-wave-ice-ocean systems, modern observing capability lags behind, unable to deliver the high-resolution synoptic measurements of total currents, wind vectors and waves needed to advance understanding, develop better parameterizations and improve model validations, forecasts and projections. SEASTAR is a satellite mission concept that proposes to directly address this critical observational gap with synoptic two-dimensional imaging of total ocean surface current vectors and wind vectors at 1 km resolution and coincident directional wave spectra. Based on major recent advances in squinted along-track Synthetic Aperture Radar interferometry, SEASTAR is an innovative, mature concept with unique demonstrated capabilities, seeking to proceed toward spaceborne implementation within Europe and beyond.
2296-7745
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Gommenginger, Christine, Chapron, Bertrand, Hogg, Andy, Buckingham, Christian, Fox-Kemper, Baylor, Eriksson, Leif, Soulat, Francois, Ubelmann, Clément, Ocampo-Torres, Francisco, Nardelli, Bruno Buongiorno, Griffin, David, Lopez-Dekker, Paco, Knudsen, Per, Andersen, Ole, Stenseng, Lars, Stapleton, Neil, Perrie, William, Violante-Carvalho, Nelson, Schulz-Stellenfleth, Johannes, Woolf, David, Isern-Fontanet, Jordi, Ardhuin, Fabrice, Klein, Patrice, Mouche, Alexis, Pascual, Ananda, Capet, Xavier, Hauser, Daniele, Stoffelen, Ad, Morrow, Rosemary, Aouf, Lotfi, Breivik, Øyvind, Fu, Lee-Lueng, Johannessen, Johnny A., Aksenov, Yevgeny, Bricheno, Lucy, Hirschi, Joel, Martin, Adrien C. H., Martin, Adrian P., Nurser, George, Polton, Jeff, Wolf, Judith, Johnsen, Harald, Soloviev, Alexander, Jacobs, Gregg A., Collard, Fabrice, Groom, Steve, Kudryavtsev, Vladimir, Wilkin, John, Navarro, Victor, Babanin, Alex, Martin, Matthew, Siddorn, John, Saulter, Andrew, Rippeth, Tom, Emery, Bill, Maximenko, Nikolai, Romeiser, Roland, Graber, Hans, Azcarate, Aida Alvera, Hughes, Chris W., Vandemark, Doug, Silva, Jose Da, Leeuwen, Peter Jan Van, Naveira-garabato, Alberto, Gemmrich, Johannes, Mahadevan, Amala, Marquez, Jose, Munro, Yvonne, Doody, Sam and Burbidge, Geoff (2019) SEASTAR: A mission to study ocean submesoscale dynamics and small-scale atmosphere-ocean processes in coastal, shelf and polar seas. Frontiers in Marine Science, 6. (doi:10.3389/fmars.2019.00457).

Record type: Article

Abstract

High-resolution satellite images of ocean color and sea surface temperature reveal an abundance of ocean fronts, vortices and filaments at scales below 10 km but measurements of ocean surface dynamics at these scales are rare. There is increasing recognition of the role played by small scale ocean processes in ocean-atmosphere coupling, upper-ocean mixing and ocean vertical transports, with advanced numerical models and in situ observations highlighting fundamental changes in dynamics when scales reach 1 km. Numerous scientific publications highlight the global impact of small oceanic scales on marine ecosystems, operational forecasts and long-term climate projections through strong ageostrophic circulations, large vertical ocean velocities and mixed layer re-stratification. Small-scale processes particularly dominate in coastal, shelf and polar seas where they mediate important exchanges between land, ocean, atmosphere and the cryosphere, e.g., freshwater, pollutants. As numerical models continue to evolve toward finer spatial resolution and increasingly complex coupled atmosphere-wave-ice-ocean systems, modern observing capability lags behind, unable to deliver the high-resolution synoptic measurements of total currents, wind vectors and waves needed to advance understanding, develop better parameterizations and improve model validations, forecasts and projections. SEASTAR is a satellite mission concept that proposes to directly address this critical observational gap with synoptic two-dimensional imaging of total ocean surface current vectors and wind vectors at 1 km resolution and coincident directional wave spectra. Based on major recent advances in squinted along-track Synthetic Aperture Radar interferometry, SEASTAR is an innovative, mature concept with unique demonstrated capabilities, seeking to proceed toward spaceborne implementation within Europe and beyond.

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Accepted/In Press date: 9 July 2019
Published date: 13 August 2019

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 433499
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/433499
ISSN: 2296-7745
PURE UUID: 3d8e7b2f-c000-41f1-878d-a710d6d5d440

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Date deposited: 23 Aug 2019 16:30
Last modified: 11 Nov 2019 17:31

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Contributors

Author: Christine Gommenginger
Author: Bertrand Chapron
Author: Andy Hogg
Author: Christian Buckingham
Author: Baylor Fox-Kemper
Author: Leif Eriksson
Author: Francois Soulat
Author: Clément Ubelmann
Author: Francisco Ocampo-Torres
Author: Bruno Buongiorno Nardelli
Author: David Griffin
Author: Paco Lopez-Dekker
Author: Per Knudsen
Author: Ole Andersen
Author: Lars Stenseng
Author: Neil Stapleton
Author: William Perrie
Author: Nelson Violante-Carvalho
Author: Johannes Schulz-Stellenfleth
Author: David Woolf
Author: Jordi Isern-Fontanet
Author: Fabrice Ardhuin
Author: Patrice Klein
Author: Alexis Mouche
Author: Ananda Pascual
Author: Xavier Capet
Author: Daniele Hauser
Author: Ad Stoffelen
Author: Rosemary Morrow
Author: Lotfi Aouf
Author: Øyvind Breivik
Author: Lee-Lueng Fu
Author: Johnny A. Johannessen
Author: Yevgeny Aksenov
Author: Lucy Bricheno
Author: Joel Hirschi
Author: Adrien C. H. Martin
Author: Adrian P. Martin
Author: George Nurser
Author: Jeff Polton
Author: Judith Wolf
Author: Harald Johnsen
Author: Alexander Soloviev
Author: Gregg A. Jacobs
Author: Fabrice Collard
Author: Steve Groom
Author: Vladimir Kudryavtsev
Author: John Wilkin
Author: Victor Navarro
Author: Alex Babanin
Author: Matthew Martin
Author: John Siddorn
Author: Andrew Saulter
Author: Tom Rippeth
Author: Bill Emery
Author: Nikolai Maximenko
Author: Roland Romeiser
Author: Hans Graber
Author: Aida Alvera Azcarate
Author: Chris W. Hughes
Author: Doug Vandemark
Author: Jose Da Silva
Author: Peter Jan Van Leeuwen
Author: Johannes Gemmrich
Author: Amala Mahadevan
Author: Jose Marquez
Author: Yvonne Munro
Author: Sam Doody
Author: Geoff Burbidge

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