Wednesday, January 16, 2013

The PO.DAAC is pleased to announce the "Preview" release of the "SeaWinds on QuikSCAT Arctic Sea Ice Age Classification (BYU/SCP)" dataset produced by Dr. David Long at Brigham Young University (BYU) as part of the Scatterometer Climate Record Pathfinder (SCP) (Swan and Long, 2012). This dataset  identifies First-Year (FY) and Multi-Year (MY) sea ice using SeaWinds on QuikSCAT scatterometer observations on a daily basis from 20 June 2002 through 23 November 2009. The dataset provides nominal 4.45 km (pixel resolution at reference latitude 70 N) gridded fields from daily gridded QuikSCAT vertically polarized (V-pol) egg backscatter data produced by SCP.  The product utilizes passive microwave AMSR-E 6 GHz data to provide the initial ocean/ice masking edge. The seasonal threshold for FY and MY sea ice classification is derived from the QuikSCAT data. Further details on the algorithms, validation, and error estimates are described in Swan and Long (2012).

Data files are provided in a CF-compliant, netCDF version 3 format. The dataset, software readers (currently available in Python and IDL), and user guide documentation can be accessed via the dataset information pages.

The primary dataset information page is provided through our web portal:

The V-pol egg backscatter data used to generate the primary dataset is also available at PO.DAAC:

Should you have any questions or wish to provide feedback on this dataset, please contact us at:

A.M. Swan and D.G. Long, 2012: Multi-year Arctic sea ice classification using QuikSCAT. IEEE Trans. Geosci. Rem. Sens., Vol. 50, No. 9, pp. 3317-3326. doi: 10.1109/LGRS.2011.2180505

This dataset is currently only available through PO.DAAC, but a link to this product will soon be available through the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC), which processes, archives, documents, and distributes data from NASA's past and current Earth Observing System (EOS) satellites and field measurement programs, focusing on the cryosphere.