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Evaluation of the Interactive Multisensor Snow and Ice Mapping System (IMS) for monitoring sea ice phenology
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Meteorology .
Number of Authors: 4
2014 (English)In: Remote Sensing of Environment, ISSN 0034-4257, E-ISSN 1879-0704, Vol. 147, 65-78 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

We present an evaluation of the Interactive Multisensor Snow and Ice Mapping System (IMS) for monitoring northern hemisphere sea ice phenology. Analysts utilize a variety of datasets to manually derive the daily extent of snow, ice, water and land, available at both 24 and 4 km. The 4 km IMS product was assessed for 2004-2008 against several previously established melt/freeze algorithms using Scatterometer Image Reconstruction (SIR) SeaWinds/QuikSCAT (QuikSCAT) backscatter (sigma degrees), Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer for the Earth Observing System (AMSR-E) brightness temperature (T-B) measurements, data from the Special Sensor Microwave/Image data (SSM/I) and sea ice concentrations derived from DMSP Special Sensor Microwave/Imager-Special Sensor Microwave Imager Sounder (SSMI-SSMIS) data (NASATeam dataset). The resolution possible with the 4 km IMS product allows for better spatial representation of sea ice along the coastlines, the ice edges and in the narrow channels of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago as compared to the microwave products. IMS detects open water earlier and freeze onset later than the automated microwave products, and also allows for the detection of opening, and the subsequent closing, of leads that the other datasets are unable to detect. Using RADARSAT-1 imagery for evaluation, IMS is shown to outperform the other datasets for the timing and extent of the first open water detection. IMS identified between 17 and 53% greater open water coverage than the other datasets in the narrow channels of the Northwest Passage (Barrow Strait). In order to further the use of IMS for sea ice applications, we derived two new spatial datasets using the full record of IMS data (4 km: 2004-present 24 km: 1997-present): melt duration to open water (duration from melt onset detected with SSM/I passive microwave until open water detected by IMS) and first year ice cover duration (duration from freeze onset until open water, both detected by IMS). Crown Copyright (C) 2014 Published by Elsevier Inc. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. Vol. 147, 65-78 p.
Keyword [en]
Sea ice, IMS, QuikSCAT, AMSR-E, SSM/I, Ice cover duration, Melt duration
National Category
Environmental Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-105207DOI: 10.1016/j.rse.2014.02.012ISI: 000336186400006OAI: diva2:732217


Available from: 2014-07-03 Created: 2014-06-24 Last updated: 2014-07-03Bibliographically approved

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Mortin, Jonas
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