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MODIS Atmosphere Product Validation

EarthMODIS Atmosphere product quality is maintained through close collaboration among its QA, calibration, and validation components. MODIS atmosphere validation follows a fundamental philosophy that to validate these products, we necessarily need to validate the specific atmospheric parameters under widely different atmospheric conditions as well as ecosystems globally. The MODIS atmosphere science team uses a wide variety of validation methods to characterize the uncertainty component in their data. Each algorithm developer incorporates his/her own approach for validating particular data. The MODIS Atmosphere Validation Plan, developed in 2001, provides a good introduction to the overall approach to this activity; new users are encouraged to consult this plan. As described in this plan, the validation approaches may include the following:

  • Coordination and collocation with higher resolution aircraft data
  • Intercomparison of measurements with the following data:
    • Those derived from different validation campaigns (satellite, airborne, surface, in situ).
    • Unique validation datasets (Aerosol Robotic Network (AERONET), CloudSat).
    • Satellite-derived measurements from other platforms and sensors (Terra versus Aqua, MISR, AIRS, AMSR, etc.).
  • Focused field campaigns within specific locations and environmental conditions to generate a long time-series of selected measurements from well-distributed validation sites.

A good source for known MODIS atmosphere data problems and their fixes is available as part of the MODIS Atmosphere page:

MODIS atmosphere data users may also find the following two (older and hence of limited value) validation-related pages useful:

Last updated: April 5, 2019