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SARAL/AltiKa data analysis for oceanographic research: Impact of drifting and post star sensor anomaly phases

Abstract : AltiKa, first ever high frequency Ka-band altimeter on board SARAL (Satellite with ARgos and ALtiKa) has gone through different phases of operations, viz. Exact Repeat Mission, (ERM, March 2013 - July 2016), Drifting phase, (DP, July 2016 - January 2018) and then to Mispointing phase, (MP, February 2018 - till date). A detailed assessment of Sea level anomaly (SLA), Significant Wave Height (SWH) and Ocean Surface Wind Speed (WS) has been carried out during these different phases with a focus on the North Indian Ocean. Crossover analysis using the Jason series of satellites available during various phases of SARAL suggest high quality of SARAL/AltiKa data during the ERM and DP with root mean square differences of the order of 0.080 m, 0.25 m and 1 m/s for SLA, SWH and WS respectively. These differences are more during MP, being 0.095 m, 0.45 m and 1.72 m/s for SLA, SWH and WS respectively. Wavenumber Power spectrum computed from the along-track AltiKa SLA reveals that slopes in the mesoscale band (70-250 km) in different phases of operations are not very different. Errors in gridded SARAL/AltiKa SLA with respect to standard AVISO product remains unchanged during DP, but degrade by nearly 9.3% in the MP as compared to ERM. To assess the effect of assimilating along track SWH and SLA from different phases, two set of wave and circulation model simulations, with and without SARAL AltiKa data assimilation, were performed. Assimilation of SWH improved the wave height simulation by ∼ 12.8% during the DP and ∼ 8% during ERM and MP. As regards to circulation modeling, no significant difference of assimilating SLA from different phases was observed in the mesoscale range. These results indicate the usefulness of SLA from SARAL AltiKa during DP and MP for studying the mesoscale dynamics.
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Submitted on : Monday, June 27, 2022 - 4:15:09 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, August 2, 2022 - 4:29:51 AM

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Rashmi Sharma, Aditya Chaudhary, M. Seemanth, Suchandra Aich Bhowmick, Neeraj Agarwal, et al.. SARAL/AltiKa data analysis for oceanographic research: Impact of drifting and post star sensor anomaly phases. Advances in Space Research, 2022, 69, pp.2349-2361. ⟨10.1016/j.asr.2021.12.008⟩. ⟨insu-03706389⟩

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