SAR observations of the Gulf Stream during SWADE



In this article, we present and discuss some airborne synthetic aperture radar (SAR) observations of the Gulf Stream that were made by the Canada Centre for Remote Sensing (CCRS) during the Surface Wave Dynamics Experiment (SWADE) [see Weller et al., 1991]. The CCRS CV-580 aircraft is equipped with a C-band SAR [see Livingstone et al., 1988] and was flown on four separate occasions during the third SWADE intensive observation period in February and March 1991.

While the purpose of SWADE is to study wind wave dynamics, a northward meander brought the Gulf Stream over the continental shelf and into the SWADE observational area to the east of Wallops Island, Va. The approximate location of the Gulf Stream, based upon an operational oceanographic feature analysis using infrared imagery from the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) and buoy data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, is shown in Figure 1.