by Rhona Phipps

The first FIDUCEO workshop “Earth observation Radiances to Climate Data Records: Metrological Principles and their Application”, was held on 17th to 19th April at IPMA premises in Lisbon, Portugal.

Isabel Trigo, IPMA, welcomed the attendees to the 3 day event, which attracted FCDR users from all over Europe, to understand how the science of metrology could be best used in Earth Observation.


Day 1:

Day 1 introduced the attendees to the concept of metrology for Earth Observation in a series of Uncertainty concept talks, led by Chris Merchant (FIDUCEO PI; UREAD), Jon Mittaz, (FIDUCEO CO-PI; UREAD) and Emma Woolliams (NPL). After each Uncertainty concept talk, the theory was then put in to practice quickly with the help of some highly organised and focussed breakout sessions.

The attendees were invited to bring along posters describing how they currently use Uncertainties in their research activities. Over informal drinks, members of the FIDUCEO team discussed these posters on a one-to-one basis, to learn more about the attendees’ current use of and understanding of Uncertainties in their work.

Poster session:

Day 2:

Day 2 opened with the final session on Uncertainty concepts and a linked breakout session, before moving on to short presentations from the FIDUCEO project team on how these concepts have been put into practice in the FIDUCEO MW, AVHRR, HIRS and MVIRI Beta FCDRs. (Martin Burgdorf; UHAM, Michael Taylor; UREAD, Gerrit Holl; UREAD, Frank Ruethrich; EUMETSAT).

Chris Merchant, then explained the format of the “easy” FIDUCEO FCDRs and how they have been designed for ease of use by the wider community.

After lunch, the Harmonisation concept being adopted by FIDUCEO, to produce long term climate data records, was introduced by Emma Woolliams. This was followed up by Sam Hunt (NPL) and Ralf Quast (FastOpt) leading an interactive python session on the comparison of fitting algorithms used in the Harmonisation process.

Sam Hunt; ipython session:

The FIDUCEO Beta users; Steffen Kothe (DWD),  Abhay Devasthale (SMHI), Bill Bell (ECMWF) and Anke Tetzlaff (MeteoSwiss) then presented brief overviews on the FIDUCEO pre-beta FCDRs that they have trialled.

Information relating to the tools that the FIDUCEO project is going to produce as part of the product suite was presented by Tom Block (Brockman Consulting).

Day 3:

Day 3 was a discussion themed day; the attendees were split into 4 groups and feedback was garnered from them on the topics “What is an FCDR – feedback on definition and guidance”, “Evaluation of the FIDUCEO easy FCDR concept” and “Evaluation of the Harmonisation concept”.

The attendees provided very insightful feedback to the team and this will be included in the workshop writeup (which will be made available on the FIDUCEO website).

Rob Roebeling (EUMETSAT) and Rhona Phipps (UREAD) provided feedback on the lessons learned in the generation of the FCDRs so far and on the FIDUCEO plans and objectives for the remainder of the FIDUCEO project.

Chris then presented information on his thoughts on the FIDUCEO legacy and invited the attendees to comment further on this and if there were any additional suggestions for links to organisations/ institutions.

In closing the workshop, Isabel Trigo thanked the attendees for their input into a very useful and informative workshop.

[Photos courtesy of GHoll]

Workshop online feedback comments:

“Excellent workshop, thanks a lot to all organisers. The exercises were a very good idea, although more time would have been required (difficult given the limited amount of time). Maybe the material of the exercises could have been sent in advance to the meeting? It would be nice to have the exercise AND the answers on the webpage, as they constitute nice learning examples. Why not organising a dedicated training workshop in the future together with Agencies, like ESA does for SNAP or for Copernicus Data training workshop? A higher level training would be nice too, with real EO and uncertainty data, to handle the complexity in a real case.”

“I liked the software tutorial!”

“I found particularly useful the examples on harmonization vs homogenisation. Before the meeting and based on a quick reading of the blog I was really confused on the difference. I would expect to see it implemented as a tutorial.”