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Invited researcher Bertrand Chapron
Contract number
Time span of the project

As of 19.05.2020

Number of staff members
scientific publications
Objects of intellectual property
General information

Name of the project: Satellite oceanology, physical oceanology, interaction of the ocean and the atmosphere, atmospheric boundary layers, remote probing, data processing, web technologies

Strategy for Scientific and Technological Development Priority Level: е

Goals and objectives

Research directions: Satellite oceanology, physical oceanology, interaction of the ocean and the atmosphere, atmospheric boundary layers, remote probing, data processing, web technologies

Project objective: Scientific research in the field of development of new methods and technologies for processing, analysis and proliferation of satellite data, implementation of results of this work into social and economical domains by commercialization of developed products and technologies

The practical value of the study

  • We have developed new approaches and models for analysis of two co-polarization satellite РСА-images of the ocean that allow to explicitly distinguish the contribution of wind wave and Bragg ripple to inverse scattering. The method has been applied for research and determination numerical characteristics of surface manifestations of ocean currents of various natures, fronts and surface contamination, including oil spills in different regions of the World Ocean. On the basis of the new approach we have proposed method for identifying oil contamination and their distinction from other phenomena that have similar textures in PCA images.
  • Our Laboratory has conducted further development of models of radar beam scattering aimed at at more accurate description of impact of crashing waves on reflected signal and modeling Doppler shift and its dependency on parameters of the surrounding environment.
  • A new method has been developed for analysis of satellite images of sun glint that allows to study surface manifestations of dynamic processes and to restore spectrums of wind waves, their evolution as well as to determine velocities of surface currents, dispersion ratios of waves. Application of this method to the Cape Agulhas current region allowed us to study interaction of ripple waves and currents, to detect and explain the genesis of abnormally high waves that are dangerous for ships.
  • Our researchers have developed a simplified model of generation of wind waves by moving cyclones. The model is based on a generalization of similarity theory for the case of build-up of waves in a wind field the is inhomogeneous in space in time. The model has been applied for analysis of satellite altimetry measurements of waves in hurricanes. On the basis of this model we have suggested a criterion of generation of abnormally high waves by hurricanes.
  • The Laboratory has proposed development of the model of interaction of the boundary layer of the atmosphere over waves that factors in the influence of wind waves and their crashing against flows of heat and impulse on the surface of the sea including hurricane wind conditions.
  • A model of microwave emissions of the «ocean-atmosphere» has been developed using an empirical wind dependency of the ocean emission of the ocean and an enhanced geophysical model function of microwave radiation from the ocean for hurricane winds.
  • We have develop a method for recovering wind speed from AMSR2 data including hurricane winds, a method for identifying radio frequency interference in C and X bands, a method for recovering moisture content of the atmosphere and precipitation intensity from AMSR2 data, a method for identifying extreme phenomena in the fields of integral humidity of the atmosphere, a method for recovering near-water pressure from satellite scatterometry data, a method for dividing impacts of microwave radiation of precipitation and radiation of the «ocean-atmosphere» in hurricanes.
  • Our researchers have developed new algorithms for recovering ice compaction ratios in the Arctic from from satellite radiometry data, recovering excess marine ice over the surface of water from data obtained by ICESat laser altimeter, detecting types of marine ice in the Arctic from radar altimetry.

Implemented results of research:

  • The Laboratory has created the SATIN web catalog (http://satin.rshu.ru/). It provides access to archives and current data of remote probing of the ocean. SATIN is ideally suitable for a primary introduction to the domain of satellite oceanography and at the same time can be used for solving a wide range of scientific problems.
  • We have developed the Arctic portal (http://siows.solab.rshu.ru/) that allows to monitor the state of the ocean and the atmosphere in real time including such dangerous phenomena as polar cyclones, oil contamination, boundaries of ice cover from satellite data as well as to forecast weather condition in the Russian sector of the Arctic on the basis of a high resolution numerical model of the atmosphere.

Education and career development:

A lecture course in remote methods of environmental research and satellite oceanography has been developed for masters students of the Faculty of Oceanography of the Russian State Hydrometeorological University.

Organizational and structural changes:

A highly productive computaation cluster based on the IBM BladeCenterH has been created. It has wide options for scaling and extension with various means of integration and control. A number of workstations has been created for access to the cluster for conducting model computations, accumulating processing and analysis of satellite data. The cluster contains 17 blade servers having 192 GB of RAM each. Thus, the cluster's chassis feature 816 GB of RAM and 204 cores. The chassis have a unique capability for simultaneous usage of blade servers with different processor architectures. The data storage system uses the IBM System Storage DS3524 Express Dual Controller Storage System that allows cascade connection and features a connection backup system. The data storage array can be seamlessly extended on demand by cascade connection of EXP3524 extension. The server control and commutation system is based on equipment manufactured by Aten. It uses 16-port KVM switches with a capability for controlling blade chassis via local network. The cluster uses VMware: vSPhere 5 Enterprise Plus, and VMware vCenter Server 5 Standard for vSPhere 5 as virtualization environments.

Other results:

  • The Laboratory has received a grant from the Russian Science Foundation for 2017-2020. The research topic of the project is a continuation and development of the research started within the mega-grant program. The project entitled «The marine ice – ocean – atmosphere system in the Arctic according to data from satellite monitoring and modeling» is supervised by the leading scientist of the Laboratory Dr. Bertrand Chapron, Senior scientist and Head of the Space Oceanography Laboratory at the French Research Institute for Exploitation of the Sea – IFREMER (France).
  • Members of the academic staff of the Satellite Oceanography Laboratory have on several occasions won different competitions and grants: the program for grant and scholarship support of students, postgraduates, young researchers and young candidates of sciences of universities and academic institutions, a grant from the President of the Russian Federation for state support of young scientists, grants of the Russian Science Foundation, the Russian Foundation for Basic Research, projects within other federal target projects etc.


  • French Research Institute for Exploitation of the Sea – IFREMER (France), Collecte Localisation Satellites (France), Danish Technological Institute (Denmark), Danish Meteorological Institute (Denmark), Nansen Environmental and Remote Sensing Center (Norway), Finnish Meteorological Institute (Finland), University of Helsinki (Finland), Space Research Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences (Russia), Marine Hydrophysical Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences (Russia), Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute (Russia): joint scientific projects, publications, scientific seminars and schools
  • Nanjing University of Science and Technology (China PR): joint scientific projects, scientific seminars and school, academic exchange of researchers and students
  • P.P. Shirshov Institute of Oceanology of the Russian Academy of Sciences (Russia), A. M. Obukhov Institute of Atmospheric Physics of the Russian Academy of Sciences (Russia): joint scientific research and events, consulting and seminars for members of the academic staff of the Laboratory

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Zabolotskikh E.V., Mitnik L.M., Chapron B.
New Approach for Severe Marine Weather Study Using Satellite Passive Microwave Sensing. Geophysical Research Letters 40(13): 3347–3350 (2013).
Kudryavtsev V., Yurovskaya M., Chapron B., Collard F., Donlon C.
Sun Glitter Imagery of Ocean Surface Waves. Part 1: Directional Spectrum Retrieval and Validation. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans 122(2): 1369–1383 (2017).
Reul N., Chapron B., Zabolotskikh E., Donlon C., Quilfen Y., Guimbard S., Piolle J.F.
A revised L-band radio-brightness sensitivity to extreme winds under tropical cyclones: The 5 year SMOS-Storm database. Remote Sensing of Environment 180: 274-291 (2016).
Kudryavtsev V., Kozlov I., Chapron B., Johannessen J.A.
Quad-polarization SAR features of ocean currents. Journal of Geophysical Research C: Oceans 119(9): 6046-6065 (2014).
Kudryavtsev V., Golubkin P., Chapron B.
A Simplified Wave Enhancement Criterion for Moving Extreme Events. Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans 120: 7538–7558 (2015).
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