BackForwardInstrument:  MWR (AWS) 

Instrument details
Acronym MWR (AWS)
Full name Microwave Radiometer (AWS)
Purpose To measure temperature and humidity profiles primarily over the Arctic
Short description 19 channel microwave radiometer sensing in oxygen and water vapour bands.
Background New development
Scanning Technique Cross-track scanning, swath 1870 km covering the polar zones with no gap
Resolution Changing with frequency in the range from 10 to 40 km (see table below)
Coverage / Cycle
Mass Power Data Rate

 

Providing Agency ESA
Instrument Maturity Backed by strong heritage
Utilization Period: ≥2024-02 to ≥2029
Last update: 2022-04-11
Detailed characteristics

No.

Central frequency

Bandwidth

NEΔT

Polarisation

Resolution

1

50.3 GHz

180 MHz

< 0.6 K

QV

≤ 40 km

2

52.8 GHz

400 MHz

< 0.4 K

QV

≤ 40 km

3

53.246 GHz

300 MHz

< 0.4 K

QV

≤ 40 km

4

53.596 GHz

370 MHz

< 0.4 K

QV

≤ 40 km

5

54.4 GHz

400 MHz

< 0.4 K

QV

≤ 40 km

6

54.94 GHz

400 MHz

< 0.4 K

QV

≤ 40 km

7

55.5 GHz

330 MHz

< 0.5 K

QV

≤ 40 km

8

57.290344 GHz

330 MHz

< 0.6 K

QV

≤ 40 km

9

89 GHz

4000 MHz

< 0.3 K

QV

≤ 20 km

10

165.5 GHz

2800 MHz

< 0.6 K

QV

≤ 10 km

11

176.311 GHz

2000 MHz

< 0.7 K

QV

≤ 10 km

12

178.311 GHz

2000 MHz

< 0.7 K

QV

≤ 10 km

13

180.311 GHz

1000 MHz

< 1 K

QV

≤ 10 km

14

181.311 GHz

1000 MHz

< 1 K

QV

≤ 10 km

15

182.311 GHz

500 MHz

< 1.3 K

QV

≤ 10 km

16

325.15±1.2 GHz

800 MHz

< 1.7 K

QV

≤ 10 km

17

325.15±2.4 GHz

1200 MHz

< 1.4 K

QV

≤ 10 km

18

325.15±4.1 GHz

1800 MHz

< 1.2 K

QV

≤ 10 km

19

325.15±6.6 GHz

2800 MHz

< 1 K

QV

≤ 10 km

Satellites this instrument is flying on

Note: a red tag indicates satellites no longer operational, a green tag indicates operational satellites, a blue tag indicates future satellites

Instrument classification
  • Earth observation instrument
  • Passive microwave radiometer
  • Cross-track, special or non-scanning microwave radiometer
WIGOS Subcomponents
  • Subcomponent 1
  • MW sounders [in SSO]
  • MW sounder [in SSO]
Mission objectives
Primary mission objectives
  • Atmospheric temperature
  • Cloud ice
  • Cloud ice Total Column
  • Integrated Water Vapour (IWV)
  • Precipitation intensity at surface (liquid or solid)
  • Specific humidity
Evaluation of Measurements

The following list indicates which measurements can typically be retrieved from this category of instrument. To see a full Gap Analysis by Variable, click on the respective variable.

Note: table can be sorted by clicking on the column headers
Note: * Primary mission objective.
VariableRelevance for measuring this variableOperational limitationsExplanation
Atmospheric temperature*3 - highVery coarse vertical resolution.A few MW channels in the 54 GHz band. Nearly all-weather sounding
Cloud drop effective radius5 - marginalHighly indirect.MW channels around 90 GHz, and in 183 GHz band
Cloud liquid water (CLW)3 - highNo specific limitation.MW channels around 90 GHz, and in 183 GHz band
Cloud liquid water (CLW) total column3 - highNo specific limitation.MW channels around 90 GHz, and in 183 GHz band
Downward long-wave irradiance at Earth surface5 - marginalHighly indirect.MW channels in 183 GHz band to account for downward cloud radiation
Freezing level height in clouds4 - fairNo specific limitation.MW channels in the 54 GHz band. Inference from the temperature profile
Melting layer depth in clouds4 - fairNo specific limitation.MW channels in the 54 GHz band. Inference from the temperature profile
Precipitation intensity at surface (liquid or solid)*5 - marginalNo specific limitation.MW channels in the 183 GHz band. Suitable for solid precipitation over sea and land, Insensitive to surface emissivity
Specific humidity*2 - very highCoarse vertical resolution.MW channels in the 183 GHz band, and 54 GHz for temperature and liquid water corrections
Integrated Water Vapour (IWV)*2 - very highNo specific limitation.MW channels in the water vapour band around 183 GHz
Upward long-wave irradiance at Earth surface5 - marginalHighly indirect.MW channels is the 183 GHz band to infer the impact of clouds on the upward LW radiation
Cloud ice*1 - primaryNo specific limitation.Channels above 200 GHz have more sensitivity to ice cloud
Cloud ice Total Column*1 - primaryNo specific limitation.Channels above 200 GHz have more sensitivity to ice cloud
Cloud ice effective radius3 - highNo specific limitation.MW channels around 90 GHz, and in 183 GHz band