Ocean surface phenomena including wind, waves, oil slicks, even the eyes of hurricanes are being routinely observed by space-based radar instruments for more than a decade now. The same principle is now employed to help satellite radar begin to enable direct measurements of the speed of the moving ocean surface itself.
The oceans cover 71% of the Earth’s surface and are constantly in motion. And the ocean surface currents can lead to strong interaction with wind and waves, and through the transfer of heat influence the weather.
To potentially offer a more direct and therefore very valuable source of high-resolution information for oceanographers, the Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) instruments such as the ASAR on ESA’s Envisat have now been demonstrated.
Via: Science Daily