2018 edition, Scopus 2019

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Oceanobs19: An Ocean of Opportunity

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Front. Mar. Sci. | doi: 10.3389/fmars.2019.00348

Requirements for a Coastal Hazards Observing System

  • 1European Space Research Institute (ESRIN), Italy
  • 2LEGOS, U. Toulouse, CNES, CNRS, UPS, IRD, France
  • 3Istituto di biofisica (IBF), Italy
  • 4Institute of Geodesy and Geoinformation, University of Bonn, Germany
  • 5NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), United States
  • 6Technical University of Denmark, Denmark
  • 7UMR8630 Systèmes de référence temps espace (SYRTE), France
  • 8National Oceanography Centre, University of Southampton, United Kingdom
  • 9Institut d'Estudis Espacials de Catalunya, Spain
  • 10European Centre for Space Applications and Telecommunications (ECSAT), United Kingdom
  • 11Bureau de Recherches Géologiques et Minières, France
  • 12Collecte Localisation Satellites (CLS), France
  • 13Faculty of Sciences, University of Porto, Portugal
  • 14Interdisciplinary Center for Marine and Environmental Research, Abel Salazar Institute of Biomedical Sciences, University of Porto, Portugal
  • 15Purdue University, United States
  • 16National Oceanography Centre, University of Southampton, United Kingdom
  • 17Department of Fisheries and Oceans (Canada), Canada
  • 18Danish Meteorological Institute (DMI), Denmark
  • 19Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, University of Miami, United States
  • 20Laboratory for Satellite Altimetry, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), United States
  • 21UMR8187 Laboratoire d'océanologie et de géosciences (LOG), France
  • 22Instituto Mediterráneo de Estudios Avanzados (IMEDEA), Spain
  • 23Mercator Ocean (France), France
  • 24German Geodetic Research Institute, Technical University of Munich, Germany
  • 25European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites, Germany
  • 26ENS-LMD–IPSL, France
  • 27Rutgers University, The State University of New Jersey, United States
  • 28UMR7266 Littoral, Environnement et Sociétés (LIENSs), France


Coastal zones are highly dynamical systems triggered by a variety natural and anthropogenic forcing factors, that include sea level rise, extreme events, local oceanic and atmospheric processes, ground subsidence, etc. However so far, they remain poorly monitored on a global scale. To better understand changes affecting world coastal zones and to provide crucial information to decision-makers involved in adaptation to and mitigation of environmental risks, coastal observations of various types need to be collected and analyzed. In this white paper, we first discuss the main forcing agents acting on coastal regions (e.g., sea level, winds, waves and currents, river runoff, sediment supply and transport, vertical land motions, land use) and the induced coastal response (e.g., shoreline position, estuaries morphology, land topography at the land-sea interface and coastal bathymetry). We identify a number of space-based observational needs that have to be addressed in the near future to understand coastal zone evolution. Among these, improved monitoring of coastal sea level by satellite altimetry techniques is recognized as high priority. Classical altimeter data in the coastal zone are adversely affected by land contamination with degraded range and geophysical corrections. However, recent progress in coastal altimetry data processing and multi-sensor data synergy, offers new perspective to measure sea level change very close to the coast. This issue is discussed in much detail in this paper, including the development of a global coastal sea-level and sea state climate record with mission consistent coastal processing and products dedicated to coastal regimes. Finally, we present a new promising technology based on the use of Signals of Opportunity (SoOps), i.e., communication satellite transmissions that are reutilized as illumination sources in a bistatic radar configuration, for measuring coastal sea level. Since SoOp technology requires only receiver technology to be placed in orbit, small satellite platforms could be used, enabling a constellation to achieve high spatio-temporal resolutions of sea level in coastal zones.

Keywords: Satellite Radar Altimetry, SAR/delay-Doppler Altimeter, re-tracking, Coastal zone, Sea level, Coastal modelling, storm surge, Reflectometry Wideband Signals of Opportunity (GNSS-R/W-SoOp), Hazards

Received: 19 Nov 2018; Accepted: 06 Jun 2019.

Edited by:

Fei Chai, Second Institute of Oceanography, State Oceanic Administration, China

Reviewed by:

Rui Caldeira, Agência Regional para o Desenvolvimento da Investigação Tecnologia e Inovação (ARDITI), Portugal
JInyu Sheng, Dalhousie University, Canada  

Copyright: © 2019 Benveniste, Cazenave, Vignudelli, Fenoglio-Marc, Shah, Almar, Andersen, Birol, Bonnefond, Bouffard, Mir Calafat, Cardellach, Cipollini, Le Cozannet, Dufau, Fernandes, Frappart, Garrison, Gommenginger, Han, Høyer, Kourafalou, Leuliette, Li, Loisel, Madsen, Marcos, Melet, Meyssignac, Pascual, Passaro, Ribó, Scharroo, Song, Speich, Wilkin, Woodworth and WOPPELMANN. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Dr. Jérôme Benveniste, European Space Research Institute (ESRIN), Frascati, Italy,