A decade of sea surface temperature from MODIS

K. A. Kilpatrick, G. Podestá, S. Walsh, E. Williams, V. Halliwell, M. Szczodrak, O. B. Brown, P. J. Minnett, R. Evans

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

104 Scopus citations


The MODIS (MODerate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometers) on the Terra and Aqua satellites, both part of NASA's Earth Observing System, have each been providing high quality global sea-surface temperatures (SSTs) for over a decade. The ability to retrieve accurate SST from satellites is dependent on many factors including spectral response, radiometer noise, pre-launch instrument characterization and in flight behavior, calibration, viewing geometry, cloud screening and correction of the clear-sky atmospheric effects. We present a characterization of both the historical and current MODIS SST products, and we describe the evolution of, and motivation for, improvements in MODIS SST for each Collection released to the public, i.e., each radiance level mission data reprocessing, each driven by improved knowledge of the instrument behavior and better corrections for instrumental artifacts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)27-41
Number of pages15
JournalRemote Sensing of Environment
StatePublished - Aug 1 2015


  • Calibration
  • Sea surface temperature
  • Validation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Soil Science
  • Geology
  • Computers in Earth Sciences


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