Thesis Open Access

Assessment of the utility of the ESA SST CCI product for environmental research using data from meteorological buoys in the North Atlantic

Binner, Hannah

Thesis supervisor(s)

Sullivan, Timothy; Scarrott, Rory

This study assessed the accuracy and utility of the European Space Agency’s Sea Surface Temperature Climate Change Initiative (ESA SST CCI) product, which was established through the Global Ocean Data Assimilation Experiment (GODAE) and the GODAE High-Resolution SST Pilot-Project (GHRSST-PP). The product, the GHRSST Multi-product ensemble (GMPE), delivered Sea Surface Temperature (SST) measurements as a global daily median observation. These daily observations were aimed to be validated through the use of in-situ data, using four of the Met Éireann meteorological buoys. For the validation, the satellite images were processed in order to obtain the SST measurement that the satellite sensors had taken at the location of each of the four in-situ buoys and compared to the SST measurements taken by the in-situ buoys. Overall, satellite observations were found to have lower SST observations, while the buoy data showed a higher variability. Seasonal variability reflected in the satellite sensor and the buoy data. It was validated, that the satellite sensor data was accurate within 0.18 °C for the M3 buoy, 0.22 °C for the M6 buoy, 0.28 °C for the M5 buoy and 0.85 °C for the M4 buoy. It was also shown that the data was more reliable for summer months at the M3 and M5 buoy locations and least reliable for the M4 buoy location, which was attributed to a potential calibration error. Results of the M6 buoy location were attributed with a large uncertainty due to outliers.

The utility of the SST variable GMPE data for use in Irish waters is suggested for applications in fisheries and aquaculture.

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