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Proceedings Paper

Use of the moon as a calibration reference for NPP VIIRS
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Paper Abstract

The Moon has served as a reference for several satellite instruments including SeaWiFS and MODIS, both of which provide design innovations for NPP VIIRS. However, as yet, the Moon is not a formal part of the calibration baseline for NPP VIIRS. In particular, the lunar measurements by the MODIS instruments require on-orbit maneuvers (spacecraft rolls of up to 20 degrees) to maintain a constant lunar phase angle. Here, we use a simulated set of NPP VIIRS lunar measurements to demonstrate the quality of the Moon as a reference for long-term measurements by VIIRS. With nine lunar comparisons (1 year of VIIRS measurements), it is possible to detect linear changes over time in the calibration of the VIIRS reflective solar bands at the 0.1% per year level or better. In addition, the surface of the Moon does not change over periods of a million years or more. As a result, the Moon can act as a cross-calibration reference for NPP VIIRS and the Terra MODIS instrument that precedes it, even with a time gap between the operation of the two sensors. The quality of this cross-comparison reference is estimated to be significantly better than 1%. However, to accomplish both of these functions, NPP VIIRS must make measurements at the same lunar phase angle as Terra MODIS, that is, at 55 degrees after full phase. This requires periodic spacecraft maneuvers.

Paper Details

Date Published: 22 August 2005
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 5882, Earth Observing Systems X, 588215 (22 August 2005); doi: 10.1117/12.618370
Show Author Affiliations
Frederick S. Patt, Science Applications International Corp. (United States)
Robert E. Eplee, Science Applications International Corp. (United States)
Robert A. Barnes, Science Applications International Corp. (United States)
Gerhard Meister, Futuretech Corp. (United States)
James J. Butler, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5882:
Earth Observing Systems X
James J. Butler, Editor(s)

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