In order to demonstrate the feasibility of the microwave radiometers to be carried aboard the Nimbus 5 and 6 satellites and proposed for one of the earth observatory satellites, remote measurements of microwave radiation at wavelengths ranging from 0.8 to 21 cm have been made of a variety of the earth's surfaces from the NASA CV-990 A/C. Brightness temperatures of sea water surfaces of varying roughness, of terrain with varying soil moisture, and of sea ice of varying structure were observed. In each case, around truth information was available for correlation with the microwave brightness temperature. The utility of passive microwave radiometry in determining ocean surface wind speeds, at least for values higher than 7 meters/second has been demonstrated. In addition, it was shown that radiometric signatures can be used to determine soil moisture in unvegetated terrain to within five percentage points by weight. Finally, it was demonstrated that first year thick, multi-year, and first year thin sea ice can be distinguished by observing their differing microwave emissivities at various wavelengths.
INSTRUMENTATION AND PHOTOGRAPHY
4th Ann. Earth Resources Program Rev., Vol. 1; 19 p