ships4sst Project Tasks

This page lists the ships4sst project tasks along with a short description of each task. If you would like further information, or to contact a task manager, please see contact details on our Partners page


Task 1

Work Package 10: International Collaboration

Task Manager: Ruth Wilson, SCL

Task 1 covers the work undertaken to collaborate with the international community, this includes the development and maintenance of the ships4sst website and the promotion of the ISFRN. Outreach is encouraged through the presentation of the SST validation activities at international conferences (e.g. GHRSST, Living Planet) with the aim of encouraging more groups to join the network and contribute match-ups from new regions. Opportunities to contribute to journals, magazines and other media are also investigated.


Task 2

Work Packages 20 - 24: Data Collection

Task Managers: Werenfrid Wimmer (UoS), Tim Nightngale (RAL), Jacob Hoeyer (DMI)

Task 2 encompasses several work packages based on the collection and archiving of in situ SSTskin FRM data, as well as the maintenance of the campaign implementation plan (CIP) and risk log for the data and deployments.

The UoS ISAR is deployed on the Brittany Ferry Pont Aven which sails several routes between the English Channel and Bay of Biscay. The DMI ISAR deployments on Smyril Line’s M/S Norröna ferry obtain FRM SSTskin observations from mid to high latitude ocean waters, namely in the North Sea and North Atlantic between Denmark, the Faroe Island and Iceland. The SISTeR instrument, owned by RAL Space, provides “round-the-world” SSTskin data from its deployments on Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 liner. See the deployments page for visualisation of these deployment routes. Each radiometer is calibrated before and after each deployment to FRM standards via a fully SI traceable calibration blackbody (CASOTS2, Donlon et al 2014) following FRM4STS and CEOS QA4EO principles.

The data archive is hosted at Ifremer and is accessible from the members page, once you have an account. All partners (UoS, RAL Space and DMI) will store their ISFRN L2R data files at the archive once they become available, which is normally after the post-deployment calibration. Non-project partners who collect data to ISFRN standard can also submit and store their data in ISFRN L2R format in the archive.

The CIP is provided as an online set of webpages across the ships4sst website. It covers a broad range of information including, campaign management and planning approach, schedule of deployments, protocols and procedures, and information pertaining to the instruments themselves. The risk log is stored online and tracks the risks that the project may face in meeting its goals and proposes mitigation strategies to minimise them.


Task 3

Work Package 30: Data Processing and Validation Analysis

Task Manager: Werenfrid Wimmer, UoS

Task 3 covers the data processing to ISFRN L2R format that is carried out by each deployment team in accordance with the data specification and user manual. The radiometer data, including uncertainties, are submitted in ISFRN L2R format to the data archive at Ifremer and accessible via the ships4sst website.

The SLSTR validation match-up database (MDB) is produced by the ESA Felyx tool at Ifremer. This MDB is processed to a number of match-up windows (Wimmer et. al. 2012) with match-up statistics, and validation plots of location, temperature difference, latitude and wind speed dependence and uncertainty comparison are produced. Due to the usage of Felyx as an MDB generator, only data fields produced by Felyx are considered for validation. The main focus of this validation is on SLSTR level 2 SST products and results.


Task 4

Work Package 40: Data Delivery and Publication of Results

Task Manager: Werenfrid Wimmer, UoS

Task 4 covers the availability of the shipborne radiometer SSTskin data in ISFRN L2R format to users. The data is stored on the project archive, accessed via the ships4sst website, alongside the Felyx MDB files showing the satellite EO data used for validation. The ISFRN L2R data specification and user manual is also stored on the same access page as the data. The dataset format is netCDF so no specially designed code is needed to read each dataset. The science leader presents the results of the project at conferences and meetings and a number of papers are in preparation for publication.


Task 5

Work Packages 50 - 51: Management

Task Manager: Ruth Wilson, SCL

Task 5 encompasses all the aspects of project management and reporting, including the scheduling and chairing of meetings, and runs continuously for the duration of the project. A number of deliverables are due from task 5 including, the service roadmap, technical data package, workshop and workshop report and a final report. The aim of the workshop is to bring together scientific and operational users and producers of in situ radiometer SST data to review progress, achievements and potential developments within the radiometer community. The workshops are open to anyone actively involved and/or interested in SST science and the use of in situ radiometers. A link to the 2020 workshop can be found here.  


Task 6

Work Package 60: Plan a CEOS International TIR Inter-Comparison Exercise

Task Manager: Werenfrid Wimmer, UoS

Task 6 began in July 2020 and will build on the inter-comparisons carried out for the FRM4STS project in 2016 at the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) and at Wraysbury for the SST field campaign. An updated version of the protocols will be produced as part of the plan, using inputs from colleagues and 2016 inter-comparison participants. The feasibility, cost and potential locations for laboratory-based and field-based inter-comparisons for a CEOS international TIR inter-comparison exercise in 2021 will also be investigated.  Once all these factors have been investigated and decided upon, a schedule with dates and potential participants will be produced.   

Figure 1: SST radiometer inter-comparison at Wraysbury, UK

Task 7

Work Package 70: Preparation of MW - TIR Experiments

Task Manager: Jacob Hoeyer, DMI

Task 7 began in July 2020 and focuses on the preparation of radiometers and protocols with the aim of conducting a short demonstration land-based experiment with simultaneous deployment of thermal infrared (TIR) and microwave (MW) radiometers. The demonstration is a precursor for a later possible shipborne inter-comparison experiment between Denmark and Iceland with simultaneous deployment of thermal Infrared and microwave radiometers, measuring on cold waters. The campaign will focus upon the differences and similarities between SSTskin and SSTsubskin to support the integration of Infrared and microwave satellite observations.

Figure 2: A microwave radiometer in the lab at the Danish Technical University (DTU)

Task 8

Work Package 80: Study for a Next Generation Radiometer

Task Manager: Tim Nightingale, RAL

Task 8 began in July 2020 and aims to outline the basis for a new generation of in situ radiometers. The majority of the current in situ radiometer fleet are first- and second-generation instruments with origins in the 1990’s. While they have been very successful and now operate routinely with high accuracy and good reliability, there is now an opportunity to review the progress in instrument development and to consider the design drivers for a new generation of in situ radiometers. This task draws on the team’s extensive experience with the ISAR and SISTeR infrared radiometers, as well as our familiarity with other measurement approaches, including microwave radiometry and infrared spectro-radiometry. The output of this task will be an outline design for a new instrument that best addresses the requirements that are identified during the study, including a summary of the instrument architecture and major subsystems.