2.4 Altimetry for the U.S. Navy's Operational Ocean Application

Thursday, 27 January 2011: 11:45 AM
602/603 (Washington State Convention Center)
Lamar A. Russell, Naval Oceanographic Office, Stennis Space Center, MS; and D. May, J. Rigney, and G. A. Jacobs

Sea-surface height anomalies derived from altimetry data are an essential input for successful ocean prediction by the Navy's global and regional operational ocean models. Beginning with the Navy's Geosat altimetry program in the late 1980s, the Naval Research Laboratory – Stennis Space Center (NRL-SSC) and the Naval Oceanographic Office (NAVOCEANO) formed a strong research-operations partnership. This partnership has resulted in successful operational access to and processing of altimetry from Geosat, ERS1&2, TOPEX-Poseidon, Jason-1, Jason-2, ENVISAT, and Geosat Follow-On (GFO). Since the creation of the Altimetry Data Fusion Center (ADFC) in 1992, operational transition of all available altimeter satellites, from TOPEX/Poseidon and ERS-1 through Jason-2, has been accomplished within a continually improving structured, systematic process between NRL-SSC and NAVOCEANO. Within this transition process, duration from launch to operational product generation has significantly improved, providing quicker implementation into Navy oceanographic modeling efforts. Transitioned capabilities have included algorithms for computation of sea-surface height anomalies using along-track mean sea surfaces that have been refined and improved over the years, improved geophysical corrections (electromagnetic bias, dry tropospheric), and orbit corrections. The next major enhancement to the ADFC's Altimeter Processing System (ALPS) will be the inclusion of the processing stream for the Altika altimeter. Altika will provide the first data from a Ka band altimeter to be processed operationally in ALPS.
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