17 October 2014 Using lunar observations to validate pointing accuracy and geolocation, detector sensitivity stability and static point response of the CERES instruments
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Abstract
Validation of in-orbit instrument performance is a function of stability in both instrument and calibration source. This paper describes a method using lunar observations scanning near full moon by the Clouds and Earth Radiant Energy System (CERES) instruments. The Moon offers an external source whose signal variance is predictable and non-degrading. From 2006 to present, these in-orbit observations have become standardized and compiled for the Flight Models -1 and -2 aboard the Terra satellite, for Flight Models-3 and -4 aboard the Aqua satellite, and beginning 2012, for Flight Model-5 aboard Suomi-NPP. Instrument performance measurements studied are detector sensitivity stability, pointing accuracy and static detector point response function. This validation method also shows trends per CERES data channel of 0.8% per decade or less for Flight Models 1-4. Using instrument gimbal data and computed lunar position, the pointing error of each detector telescope, the accuracy and consistency of the alignment between the detectors can be determined. The maximum pointing error was 0.2o in azimuth and 0.17o in elevation which corresponds to an error in geolocation near nadir of 2.09 km. With the exception of one detector, all instruments were found to have consistent detector alignment from 2006 to present. All alignment error was within 0.1o with most detector telescopes showing a consistent alignment offset of less than 0.02o.
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Janet Daniels, G. Louis Smith, Kory J. Priestley, Susan Thomas, "Using lunar observations to validate pointing accuracy and geolocation, detector sensitivity stability and static point response of the CERES instruments", Proc. SPIE 9242, Remote Sensing of Clouds and the Atmosphere XIX; and Optics in Atmospheric Propagation and Adaptive Systems XVII, 92420X (17 October 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2065256; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2065256
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