Calibration of the L-MEB model over a coniferous and a deciduous forest

Jennifer P. Grant, Kauzar Saleh-Contell, Jean-Pierre Wigneron, Massimo Guglielmetti, Yann H. Kerr, Mike Schwank, Niels Skou, Adriaan A. Van de Griend

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


    In this paper, the L-band Microwave Emission of the Biosphere (L-MEB) model used in the Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) Level 2 Soil Moisture algorithm is calibrated using L-band (1.4 GHz) microwave measurements over a coniferous (Pine) and a deciduous (mixed/Beech) forest. This resulted in working values of the main canopy parameters optical depth (tau), single scattering albedo (omega), and structural parameters tt(H) and tt(V), besides the soil roughness parameters H-R and N-R. Using these calibrated values in the forward model resulted in a root mean-square error in brightness temperatures from 2.8 to 3.8 K, depending on data set and polarization. Furthermore, the relationship between canopy optical depth and leaf area index is investigated for the deciduous site. Finally, a sensitivity study is conducted for the focus parameters, temperature, soil moisture, and precipitation. The results found in this paper will be integrated in the operational SMOS Level 2 Soil Moisture algorithm and used in future inversions of the L-MEB model, for soil moisture retrievals over heterogeneous, partly forested areas.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalIEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing
    Issue number3
    Pages (from-to)808-818
    Publication statusPublished - 2008


    • Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS)
    • soil moisture
    • forest
    • microwave radiometry
    • L-band


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