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The Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership (SNPP) Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) supports a Day-Night Band (DNB) sensor that provides global daily measurements of nocturnal visible and near-infrared (NIR) light that are suitable for Earth system science and applications. The VIIRS DNB’s ultra-sensitivity in lowlight conditions enable us to generate a new set of science-quality nighttime products that manifest substantial improvements in sensor resolution and calibration when compared to the previous era of Defense Meteorological Satellite Program/Operational Linescan System’s (DMSP/OLS) nighttime lights image products. Such improvements allow the VIIRS DNB products to better monitor both the magnitude and signature of nighttime phenomena, and anthropogenic sources of light emissions.
The second of the two VIIRS DNB-based datasets is a daily moonlight- and atmosphere-corrected Nighttime Lights (NTL) product called VIIRS/NPP Gap-Filled Lunar BRDF-Adjusted Nighttime Lights Daily L3 Global 500m Linear Lat Lon Grid. Known by its short-name, VNP46A2, this product contains seven Science Data Sets (SDS) that include the following:
DNB BRDF-Corrected NTL
Gap-Filled DNB BRDF-Corrected NTL
DNB Lunar Irradiance
Latest High-Quality Retrieval
Mandatory Quality Flag
Cloud Mask Quality Flag
VNP46A2 products are provided in standard Hierarchical Data Format–Earth Observing System (HDF-EOS5) format. Currently, this collection starts from January 19, 2012 and forward. The VNP46A2 product has been validated through various field campaigns of opportunity supported under the Group on Earth Observations (GEO) Human Planet Initiative’s Nighttime Product Validation (NPV) task. Additionally, the VNP46 product suite comes with ancillary and quality assessment layers indicating sources of error from the calibration, cloud mask, snow flag, and lunar irradiance, etc. We remind our end-users that Collection 1 is considered Beta version due to ongoing issues with the heritage nighttime cloud mask, snow flag and aerosol layers. Users should also be aware of the angular anisotropic characteristic of nighttime lights for quantitative analysis.