83rd Annual

Wednesday, 12 February 2003
A Direct Surface Wind Stress Algorithm for the SeaWinds Scatterometer
Mark A. Bourassa, COAPS/Florida State Univ., Tallahassee, FL; and D. E. Weissman
Poster PDF (195.8 kB)
The sea surface characteristics to which scatterometers respond are considered to respond more directly to stress than to wind; however, due to vastly more plentiful and more accurate wind observations, scatterometers are calibrated to winds. Wind speed is the dominant consideration in determining equivalent neutral surface stress; however, directional sea state can contribute to substantial variability. Calculating stress directly from the scatterometer’s observed backscatter can theoretically account for this variability. Such an algorithm is described. Fields of stress are determined directly from backscatter, and compared to stress fields derived from scatterometer winds and common drag coefficients. Regional biases are discussed.

Supplementary URL: