Enhanced Arctic Mean Sea Surface and Mean Dynamic Topography including retracked CryoSat-2 Data

Tuesday, 16 December 2014
Maulik Jain1, Ole Baltazar Andersen2, Lars Stenseng3 and Per Knudsen2, (1)DTU Space, Lyngby, Denmark, (2)Technical University of Denmark - Space, Kongens Lyngby, Denmark, (3)Technical University of Denmark - Space, Kgs. Lyngby, Denmark
A reliable mean sea surface (MSS) is essential to derive a good mean dynamic topography (MDT) and for the estimation of short and long-term changes in the sea surface. The lack of satellite radar altimetry observations above 82 degrees latitude means that existing mean sea surface models have been unreliable in the Arctic Ocean.

We here present the latest DTU mean sea surface and mean dynamic topography models combining conventional altimetry with retracked CryoSat-2 data to improve the reliability in the Arctic Ocean. For the derivation of a mean dynamic topography the ESA GOCE derived geoid model have been used to constrain the longer wavelength.

We present the retracking of C2 SAR data using various retrackes and how we have been able to combine data from various retrackers under various sea ice conditions.

DTU13MSS and DTU13MDT are the newest state of the art global high-resolution models including CryoSat-2 data to extend the satellite radar altimetry coverage up to 88 degrees latitude and through combination with a GOCE geoid model completes coverage all the way to the North Pole. Furthermore the SAR and SARin capability of CryoSat-2 dramatically increases the amount of useable sea surface returns in sea-ice covered areas compared to conventional radar altimeters like ENVISAT and ERS-1/2. With the inclusion of CryoSat-2 data the new mean sea surface is improved by more than 20 cm above 82 degrees latitude compared with the previous generation of mean sea surfaces.