This section deals with microwave remote sensing which aims at extracting information on physical structure and electrical properties of an object or a scene by electromagnetical field analysis (sea, ice, ground, vegetation, urban areas, atmosphere, rain and clouds …).

  • Principle

    Microwave remote sensing uses passive microwave radiometers. The microwaves have wavelength ranging from a few kHz to THz. The "passive" term means that it uses microwaves naturally radiated by the observed area (this is different from the radar principle where the sensor transmits a microwave signal towards a target and detects the backscattered radiation).

  • Applications

    Microwave radiometer brightness temperatures are considered as a fundamental climate data record and are the values from which we derive ocean measurements of wind speed, water vapor, cloud liquid water, rain rate, and sea surface temperature.

  • Missions

    The main passive microwave radiometers are presented and the link between radiometers and altimeters is detailed.