Project overview

The core action of the Fiducial Reference Measurements for Satellite Ocean Colour (FRM4SOC) project is to ensure that ground-based measurements of ocean colour parameters are traceable to SI standards in support of ensuring high quality and accurate Sentinel-2 MSI and Sentinel-3 OLCI products. The FRM4SOC project contributes directly to the work of ESA and EUMETSAT to ensure Sentinel-3 OLCI and Sentinel-2 MSI instruments are validated in orbit.

The  FRM4SOC activities are highly complementary to current FRM and Ocean Colour activities being under taken by the European Commission Joint Research Centre (JRC) to validate Copernicus satellite ocean color data products and safeguarding the standardization of EU radiometric measurements and datasets. Therefore several collaborative activities between the FRM4SOC Consortium and JRC are planned, which will enhance the outputs for the European Copernicus Observation Program. FRM4SOC includes also external collaborators from Europe and internationally who are major players in the Ocean Colour community and will participate in the comparison exercises and workshops.

The aim of the FRM4SOC project is to establish and maintain SI traceability
of Fiducial Reference Measurements (FRM) for satellite ocean colour radiometry (OCR). 

The aim of the project will be achieved through the development, documentation, implementation, and reporting of laboratory and field inter-comparison experiments for FRM OCR radiometers and dedicated international coordination activities. Part of the work will focus on defining a plan for the next generation of European Ocean Colour vicarious adjustment infrastructure. The participation of National Metrology Institution(s) is desirable to achieve credible success in this project.

The objectives of the FRM4SOC project

  1. Design and document measurement procedures and protocols for OCR FRM used for satellite OCR validation activities.
  2. Document the design and performance of OCR radiometers commonly used for satellite OCR validation including a review of their known characterisation (eg. immersion factor, cosine response, linearity, straylight, spectral, temperature sensitivity, dark currents etc.) and identify significant issues to address.
  3. Design, document protocols and procedures, and implement a laboratory-based (round-robin) comparison experiment to verify the performance of reference irradiance and radiance sources (ie. lamps, plaques etc.) used to maintain the calibration of FRM OCR radiometers traceable to SI.
  4. Design, document protocols and procedures and implement a laboratory-based (round-robin) comparison experiment to verify the performance (i.e., absolute radiometric calibration and characterization) of FRM Field Ocean Colour Radiometers (OCR) used for Satellite Validation.
  5. Design, document protocols and procedures, and implement field inter-comparisons of FRM OCR radiometers and build a database of OCR field radiometer performance knowledge over a several years.
  6. Conduct a full data analysis, derivation and specification of uncertainty budgets, following agreed NMI protocols
    , for FRM OCR field measurements used for satellite OCR validation collected as part of FRM4SOC.
  7. Evaluate options for long-term future European satellite OCR vicarious adjustment infrastructure for the Sentinel-3 OLCI and Sentinel-2 MSI A/B/C and D instruments.
  8. Publish outcomes and results in an open and transparent manner using peer reviewed and other grey literature.