Sea surface temperature (SST) measurements are required by operational ocean and atmospheric forecasting systems to constrain modeled upper ocean circulation and thermal structure. The Global Ocean Data Assimilation Experiment (GODAE) High Resolution SST Pilot Project (GHRSST-PP) was initiated to address these needs by coordinating the provision of accurate, high-resolution, SST products for the global domain. The pilot project is now complete, but activities continue within the Group for High Resolution SST (GHRSST). The pilot project focused on harmonizing diverse satellite and in situ data streams that were indexed, processed, quality controlled, analyzed, and documented within a Regional/Global Task Sharing (R/GTS) framework implemented in an internationally distributed manner. Data with meaningful error estimates developed within GHRSST are provided by services within R/GTS. Currently, several terabytes of data are processed at international centers daily, creating more than 25 gigabytes of product. Ensemble SST analyses together with anomaly SST outputs are generated each day, providing confidence in SST analyses via diagnostic outputs. Diagnostic data sets are generated and Web interfaces are provided to monitor the quality of observation and analysis products. GHRSST research and development projects continue to tackle problems of instrument calibration, algorithm development, diurnal variability, skin temperature deviation, and validation/verification of GHRSST products. GHRSST also works closely with applications and users, providing a forum for discussion and feedback between SST users and producers on a regular basis. All data within the GHRSST R/GTS framework are freely available. This paper reviews the progress of GHRSST-PP, highlighting achievements that have been fundamental to the success of the pilot project.
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