Radar Scattering from Modulated Wind Waves

Proceedings of the Workshop on Modulation of Short Wind Waves in the Gravity-Capillary Range by Non-Uniform Currents, held in Bergen aan Zee, The Netherlands, 24–26 May 1988

  • G. J. Komen
  • W. A. Oost

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-x
  2. Tidal currents and Bathymetry

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. David A. Greenberg, Gaspar R. Valenzuela, Davidson T. Chen
      Pages 3-17
  3. Electromagnetic scattering

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 25-25
    2. D. Van Halsema, Bernd Jähne, W. A. Oost, C. Calkoen, P. Snoeij
      Pages 49-57
  4. The energy balance in short waves

  5. Perturbation of the gravity-capillary wave spectrum by current variation

  6. General discussion

  7. Back Matter
    Pages 255-273

About this book


Ten years ago, de Loor and co-workers at TNO, The Netherlands, were the first to report bottom topography patterns in real aperture radar (RAR) images of the southern North Sea. At that time, this was a real puzzle. The skin depth of microwaves for sea water is only of the order of centimeters while the sea bottom is about 20 meters below the surface. Electromagnetic radiation therefore cannot probe the bottom directly. Similar phenomena were found in radar imagery from SEASAT and SIR-AlB synthetic aperture radars (SAR's) of Nantucket Shoals, the English Channel and many other coastal areas. Since then theory and ocean field experiments (Le., Phelps Bank, Georgia Straits, SARSEX, TOWARD, FASINEX, etc.) have advanced our understanding considerably. We now know that these surface signatures are the results of surface currents, perturbed by the bottom topography, which refract the propagation and modulate the energy of (short) surface waves so as to cause microwave backscatter power variations. Hence, any large scale ocean features containing nonuniform surface currents (i.e. internal waves, eddies, fronts, etc.) will cause similar manifestations in the radar imagery by means of current-wave-microwave interactions. Observations confirm this.


Ocean Scale Wind speed image processing wind

Editors and affiliations

  • G. J. Komen
    • 1
  • W. A. Oost
    • 1
  1. 1.Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI)De BiltThe Netherlands

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 1989
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Print ISBN 978-94-010-7537-4
  • Online ISBN 978-94-009-2309-6
  • Buy this book on publisher's site
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