A Toolkit for CryoSat Investigations by the ESRIN EOP-SER Altimetry Team
Dinardo, Salvatore1; Lucas, B.2; Benveniste, J.3

The scope of this work is to feature the new tool for the exploitation of the CryoSat data, designed and developed entirely by the Altimetry Team at ESRIN EOP-SER (Earth Observation - Exploitation, Research and Development).

The tool framework is composed of two separate components: the first one handles the data collection and management, the second one is the processing toolkit.

The CryoSat FBR (Full Bit Rate) data is downlinked uncompressed from the satellite, containing unaveraged individual echoes. This data is made available in the Kiruna CalVal server in a 10 day rolling archive. Daily at ESRIN all the CryoSat FBR data, in SAR and SARin Mode, are downloaded (around 30 Gigabytes) catalogued and archived in local ESRIN EOP-SER workstations.

As of November 2012, the total amount of FBR data is over 5 Terabytes, with CryoSat acquisition dates spanning January 2011 to October 2012 (with some gaps). This archive was built by merging partial datasets available at ESTEC and NOAA, that have been gently made available for EOP-SER team.

The on-demand access to this low level data is restricted to expert users with validated ESA P.I. credentials. Currently the main users of the archiving functionality are the team members of the Project CP4O (CryoSat Plus for Ocean), CNES and NOAA.

The second component of the service is the processing toolkit.

On the EOP-SER workstations there is internally and independently developed software that is able to process the FBR data in SAR/SARin mode to generate multi-looked echoes (level 1b) and subsequently able to re-track them in SAR and SARin mode (Level 2) over open ocean, exploiting the SAMOSA model and other internally developed models.

The processing segment is used for research & development scopes, supporting the development contracts awarded confronting the deliverables to ESA, on site demonstrations/training to selected users, cross-comparison against third part products (CLS/CNES CPP Products for instance), preparation to Sentinel-3 mission, publications, etc.

Samples of these experimental SAR/SARin L1b/L2 Products can be provided to the scientific community for comparison with self-processed data, on-request.

So far, the processing has been designed and optimized for open ocean studies and is fully functional only over this kind of surface but there are plans to augment this processing capacity over coastal zones, inland waters and over land in sight of maximizing the exploitation of the upcoming Sentinel-3 Topographic mission over all surfaces.

There are also plans to make the toolkit fully accessible through software "gridification" to run in the ESrin GPod (Grid Processing on Demand) Service and to extend the tool's functionalities to support Sentinel-3 Mission (Simulated and Real Data).

In this presentation, will be shown graphs and statistics about the spatial coverage and amount of FBR data actually archived on the EOP-SER workstations and some scientific results and the tests that have been designed and performed to validate the products (tests against CryoSat Kiruna PDGS Products and against transponder data).