Soil Moisture Mapping from Satellites: An Intercomparison of SMAP, SMOS, FY3B, AMSR2, and ESA CCI over Two Dense Network Regions at Different Spatial Scales

Chenyang Cui, Jia Xu, Jiangyuan Zeng, Kun-Shan Chen, Xiaojing Bai, Hui Lu, Quan Chen, Tianjie Zhao
2017 Remote Sensing  
A good knowledge of the quality of the satellite soil moisture products is of great importance for their application and improvement. This paper examines the performance of eight satellite-based soil moisture products, including the Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) passive Level 3 (L3), the Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) Centre Aval de Traitement des Données SMOS (CATDS) L3, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer 2 (AMSR2) L3, the Land
more » ... rameter Retrieval Model (LPRM) AMSR2 L3, the European Space Agency (ESA) Climate Change Initiative (CCI) L3, the Chinese Fengyun-3B (FY3B) L2 soil moisture products at a coarse resolution of~0.25 • , and the newly released SMAP enhanced passive L3 and JAXA AMSR2 L3 soil moisture products at a medium resolution of~0.1 • . The ground soil moisture used for validation were collected from two well-calibrated and dense networks, including the Little Washita Watershed (LWW) network in the United States and the REMEDHUS network in Spain, each with different land cover. The results show that the SMAP passive soil moisture product outperformed the other products in the LWW network region, with an unbiased root mean square (ubRMSE) of 0.027 m 3 m −3 , whereas the FY3B soil moisture performed the best in the REMEDHUS network region, with an ubRMSE of 0.025 m 3 m −3 . The JAXA product performed much better at 0.25 • than at 0.1 • , but at both resolutions it underestimated soil moisture most of the time (bias < −0.05 m 3 m −3 ). The SMAP-enhanced passive soil moisture product captured the temporal variation of ground measurements well, with a correlation coefficient larger than 0.8, and was generally superior to the JAXA product. The LPRM showed much larger amplitude and temporal variation than the ground soil moisture, with a wet bias larger than 0.09 m 3 m −3 . The underestimation of surface temperature may have contributed to the general dry bias found in the SMAP (−0.018 m 3 m −3 for LWW and 0.016 m 3 m −3 for REMEDHUS) and SMOS (−0.004 m 3 m −3 for LWW and −0.012 m 3 m −3 for REMEDHUS) soil moisture products. The ESA CCI product showed satisfactory performance with acceptable error metrics (ubRMSE < 0.045 m 3 m −3 ), revealing the effectiveness of merging active and passive soil moisture products. The good performance of SMAP and FY3B demonstrates the
doi:10.3390/rs10010033 fatcat:3yjatu233vh75ba7v4ogxjdlye