In this paper, anomalous spatial gradients are investigated by an image processing method, known as singularity analysis, which is proposed to complement the current Advanced Scatterometer (ASCAT) quality control (QC) by using the singularity exponent (SE). The quality of ASCAT winds is known to be generally degraded, with increasing values of the inversion residual or maximum-likelihood estimator (MLE). In the current ASCAT Wind Data Processor (AWDP), an MLE-based QC is adopted to filter poor-quality winds, which has proven to be effective in screening artifacts in the ASCAT winds, associated with increased subcell wind variability and other phenomena such as confused sea state. However, some poorly verifying winds, which appear in areas with moist convection, are not screened by the operational QC. The extension of the QC procedure with SEs is investigated, based on a comprehensive analysis of quality-sensitive parameters, using the European Centre for Medium-range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) model winds, the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission's (TRMM) Microwave Imager (TMI) rain data, and tropical buoy wind and precipitation data as reference, taking into account their spatial and temporal representation. The validation results show that the proposed method indeed effectively removes ASCAT winds in spatially variable conditions. It filters three times as many wind vectors as the operational QC, while preserving verification statistics with local buoys. We find that not the rain itself, but the extreme local wind variability associated with rain appears to generally decrease the consistency between ASCAT, buoy, and ECMWF winds.
W Lin, M Portabella, A Stoffelen, A Verhoef, A Turiel. ASCAT Wind Quality Control Near Rain
published, IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing, 2015