SMAP Radar Data and Services at the ASF DAAC

Tuesday, 15 December 2015
Poster Hall (Moscone South)
Scott A Arko, Alaska Satellite Facility, Fairbanks, AK, United States
In January 2015 NASA launched the Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) spacecraft. SMAP’s mission was to create high-resolution soil moisture and freeze-thaw products using the combination of an L-band polarimetric synthetic aperture radar (SAR) and an L-band radiometer. Two NASA Distributed Active Archive Centers (DAACs) were tasked with distribution of the SMAP data products. The Alaska Satellite Facility (ASF) DAAC was tasked to archive and distribute the SMAP radar products. In order to best support distribution of SMAP swath radar products and SMAP users, the ASF DAAC enhanced the DAAC data system in a number of ways that will be detailed in this presentation.

SMAP radar data are unique for SAR in that they are provided as half-orbit swaths over 1000km wide. This presentation will focus on two primary areas of DAAC support for SMAP. First, the ASF data discovery client, Vertex, has been updated to better support SMAP SAR data. This included enhancements to the user interface to better support swath visualizations as well as increased search capability. Utilizing NASA’s Common Metadata Repository (CMR), Vertex will allow users to download both the Level 1 SAR product as well as the higher-level products that it contributed to. In this way, the distributed nature of the data archives is better abstracted from the user experience and users have quick access to a greater variety of data. Beyond enabling data search, ASF DAAC is also supporting data utilization through the development of polar mosaics using the SAR data. SMAP is able to achieve nearly complete coverage of the Arctic north of 55 degrees every 24 hours. Based on the polarimetric SMAP data, Arctic mosaics are generated each day in geotiff format at a fixed grid spacing to allow for easy incorporation to existing workflows. Prototype ice motion products will also be shown that directly demonstrate the utility of these daily mosaics.