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SCIENTIFIC EVALUATION OF MISSION CONCEPTS TO MONITOR SNOW MASS AND OTHER CRYOSPHERIC PARAMETERS -EXPRO PLUS

ESA Open Invitation To Tender AO8409
Open Date: 11/11/2015
Closing Date: 11/01/2016

Status: ISSUED
Reference Nr.: 15.155.14
Prog. Ref.: EOEP-4 Sup.Scien.Ele
Budget Ref.: E/0094-E4 - EOEP-4 Sup.Scien.Ele
Special Prov.: BE+DK+FR+DE+IT+NL+ES+SE+CH+GB+IE+AT+NO+FI+PT+LU+CZ+RO+PL+CA
Tender Type: C
Price Range: 100-200 KEURO
Establishment: ESTEC
Directorate: Directorate of EO Programmes
Department: Science, Appl & Future Technologies Dept
Division: Mission Science Division
Contract Officer: Perez, Guiomar
Last Update Date: 11/11/2015
Update Reason: Tender issue

Seasonal snow cover accumulating on land surfaces and glaciers is an important part of the global water and energy cycles. Information on the spatial distribution of snow mass (the snow water equivalent, SWE), is important for many applications, including climatestudies, numerical weather prediction, and operational hydrological forecasting. Snow cover properties, including SWE, can be monitored on a regional or hemispherical scale by means of manual or automated point-wise measurements. However, in higher latitudes snowmeasurement networks are very sparse, affecting the accuracy of these methods. Earth observation from space has the potential to provide additional value due to the spatial and temporal coverage of satellite measurements. In addition, relative to data collected in visible wavelengths, microwave remote sensors have the added benefit of improved cloud penetration, and are not dependent on solarillumination, making observations in the microwave regime suitable for high latitude regions. The overarching objective of this activity is to study and develop the needs and scientific requirements for a new satellite mission concept with focus on global scale retrieval of snow mass and secondary cryosphere parameters taking full account of the recent and emerging experimental data sets and theoretical model developments.

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