Providing Sea Temperature Reference Measurements for Validation of Satellite SST Data Products
Wimmer, Werenfrid; Robinson, Ian
University of Southamtpon, UNITED KINGDOM

The Infrared Sea surface temperature Autonomous Radiometer (ISAR) was developed to provide reference data for the validation of satellite SSTskin temperature data products, in particular for the Advanced Along Track Scanning Radiometer (AATSR). Since March 2004 ISAR instruments have been deployed nearly continuously on ferries crossing the English Channel and the Bay of Biscay, between Portsmouth (UK) and Bilbao/Santander (Spain). The resulting ten years of ISAR data, which include the measurement uncertainty of each individual SST record and whose calibration is traceable to national standards such as NIST and NPL, provide a unique in situ independent reference dataset against which to validate satellite derived products. We present results of the AATSR validation and review performance of a SST analysis (UKMO OSTIA) before and after the demise of ENVISAT, demonstrating the value of the ISAR reference data set for validating the SST climatologies that will eventually bridge the data gap between AATSR and SLTSR. We also review plans for expanding the geographical coverage of shipborne radiometry reference datasets.