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ESA – Improved processing of Sentinel-3 altimeter data in coastal zone and inland water


18.02.2020 - 31.08.2022




PD Dr.-Ing.-habil. Luciana Fenoglio-Marc

Dr. rer. nat. Sophie Stolzenberger


The Sentinel-3 satellite is the second satellite with a SAR mode altimeter. The aim of the project HYDROCOASTAL is to study new approaches for processing SAR and SARin data from Sentinel-3 in coastal zone and inland water. Various approaches are evaluated in selected test zones and the most promising processing schemes are identified. The chosen approach is then implemented to generate global coastal zone and discharge datasets and the scientific impact of these products is evaluated in few case studies. The overall objectives of HYDROCOASTAL are:

WP1: Make a Critical review of the state-of-the-art in the scientific fields related to this activity (Altimetry, Coastal and Inland Water).

WP2: Develop, implement and test the algorithms. Generate, and validate, test data sets for selected regions. Consolidate the requirements and select the most suitable methods and algorithms to be developed and the data products to be generated. Two datasets are produced: the Global Coastal Zone and River Discharge (Medium-Large) Data Sets and the Experimental Small Rivers and Tributaries Data Set.

WP3: Assess in Case Studies the impact of the new products on Coastal Zone and Inland Water.

WP4: Recommend in a roadmap and suggest future data products and future missions.


The University Bonn is involved in all packages. In WP 2025 the STARS retracking algorithm, which applies the SINCS model (Buchhaupt et al., 2018) to the STAR retracker (Roscher et al., 2018) will be developed at APMG. STARS will be tested together with the other retrackers in the four test regions in Germany, namely German Bight, German Baltic coast, Elbe estuary and Rhine river (WP2511 and WP2521). In WP3000 APMG is involved in the impact assessment in the same regions (WP 3220 and 3330).

Work packages

Scientific Review and Requirements Consolidation

Algorithm Development, Implementation and Validation, Production of Global Datasets

Impact assessment

Scientific Roadmap




  • University of Bonn,
  • Isardsat, NOC,
  • DTU Space,
  • Noveltis,
  • TUM,
  • University of Cadiz,
  • Along-track,
  • CNR,
  • National University of Ireland,
  • University of Porto,
  • TU Delft

For more details, please visit the Project website.