Remote Sensing of Upwelling - Remote Sensing Refresher

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Upwelling events are characterized by relatively lower sea surface temperatures and higher chlorophyll levels compared to surrounding waters.

Chlorophyll and water temperatures are each associated with characteristic electromagnetic radiance signatures. Chlorophyll primarily absorbs blue and red wavelengths of light while reflecting other wavelengths, thereby appearing green in color. Temperature is associated with different emissions of infrared radiation.

Satellite sensors have been developed that can detect and report the patterns of electromagnetic energy that are being radiated from the earth's surface across the electromagnetic spectrum. By evaluating key wavelengths reported by these sensors, both sea surface chlorophyll levels and temperatures can therefore be monitored by satellite.

chlorophyll concentration around New Zealand

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