19 September 2016 Improvement in the cloud mask for Terra MODIS mitigated by electronic crosstalk correction in the 6.7 μm and 8.5 μm channels
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Abstract
MODerate resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), a remarkable heritage sensor in the fleet of Earth Observing System for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is in space orbit on two spacecrafts. They are the Terra (T) and Aqua (A) platforms which tracks the Earth in the morning and afternoon orbits. T-MODIS has continued to operate over 15 years easily surpassing the 6 year design life time on orbit. Of the several science products derived from MODIS, one of the primary derivatives is the MODIS Cloud Mask (MOD035). The cloud mask algorithm incorporates several of the MODIS channels in both reflective and thermal infrared wavelengths to identify cloud pixels from clear sky. Two of the thermal infrared channels used in detecting clouds are the 6.7 μm and 8.5 μm. Based on a difference threshold with the 11 μm channel, the 6.7 μm channel helps in identifying thick high clouds while the 8.5 μm channel being useful for identifying thin clouds. Starting 2010, it had been observed in the cloud mask products that several pixels have been misclassified due to the change in the thermal band radiometry. The long-term radiometric changes in these thermal channels have been attributed to the electronic crosstalk contamination. In this paper, the improvement in cloud detection using the 6.7 μm and 8.5 μm channels are demonstrated using the electronic crosstalk correction. The electronic crosstalk phenomena analysis and characterization were developed using the regular moon observation of MODIS and reported in several works. The results presented in this paper should significantly help in improving the MOD035 product, maintaining the long term dataset from T-MODIS which is important for global change monitoring.
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Junqiang Sun, S. Madhavan, M. Wang, "Improvement in the cloud mask for Terra MODIS mitigated by electronic crosstalk correction in the 6.7 μm and 8.5 μm channels", Proc. SPIE 9972, Earth Observing Systems XXI, 99720Z (19 September 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2237013; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2237013
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