Measuring Climatic State Variables from SAR Images of Sea Ice: The SIMS SAR Validation Site in Lancaster Sound


  • David G. Barber
  • Douglas D. Johnson
  • Ellsworth F. LeDrew



Atmospheric circulation, Classification, Climate change, Ice, Ice cover, Ice leads, Ice rubble fields, Mathematical models, Meteorology, Remote sensing, Sea ice, Snow cover, SAR, SIMS, Thermal properties, Thermodynamics, Cornwallis Island waters, Nunavut, Cornwallis Island, Lancaster Sound


In this paper we consider three aspects of arctic sea ice climate studies: a review of climate processes related to a seasonal sea ice cover, a review of how climate state variables related to the reviewed processes may be measured using remote sensing data, and an analysis of the relative utility of tonal versus textural clarification of synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images of sea ice. The two reviews are presented in the context of a field validation experiment called the Seasonal Sea Ice Monitoring Site (SIMS) being conducted in Lancaster Sound/Barrow Strait, Northwest Territories (N.W.T.) The analysis of tone versus texture as a means of extracting ice type information from SAR images of sea ice is conducted using X-band, HH polarized data from the SIMS '90 field experiment and data collected over Mould Bay, N.W.T.

Key words: climatology, remote sensing, synthetic aperture radar, sea ice