The main objective of the sea level CCI project is to produce and validate a Sea Level Essential Climate Variable (ECV) product. It represents the first phase of the ESA Climate Change Initiative program that aims at setting up in a second phase an "operational processing capacity of Earth Observation data".
The final output will be a gridded time series of satellite-derived sea level data that can be used for climatological studies. Such studies include regional sea level rise as well as long-term variations in circulation, and the ability to investigate variations in sea height associated with El Nino.
PML is involved in interpreting the data in the Arctic, where a particular challenge is distinguishing between the radar returns from ocean and from ice sheets.