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Remote Sens. 2015, 7(1), 564-578; doi:10.3390/rs70100564

A One Year Landsat 8 Conterminous United States Study of Cirrus and Non-Cirrus Clouds

Geospatial Science Center of Excellence, South Dakota State University, Wecota Hall, 506b Brookings, SD 57007, USA
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Prasad S. Thenkabail
Received: 11 October 2014 / Accepted: 15 December 2014 / Published: 7 January 2015
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Abstract

The first year of available Landsat 8 data over the conterminous United States (CONUS), composed of 11,296 acquisitions sensed over more than 11 thousand million 30 m pixel locations, was analyzed comparing the spatial and temporal incidence of 30 m cloud and cirrus states available in the standard Landsat 8 Level 1 product suite. This comprehensive data analysis revealed that on average over a year of CONUS observations (i) 35.9% were detected with high confidence cloud, with spatio-temporal patterns similar to those observed by previous Landsat 5 and 7 cloud analyses; (ii) 28.2% were high confidence cirrus; (iii) 20.1% were both high confidence cloud and high confidence cirrus; and (iv) 6.9% were detected as high confidence cirrus but low confidence cloud. The results illustrate the potential of the 30 m cloud and cirrus states available in the standard Landsat 8 Level 1 product suite but imply that the historical CONUS Landsat archive has about 7% of undetected cirrus contaminated pixels. Systematic cloud detection commission errors over a minority of highly reflective exposed soil/sand surfaces were found and it is recommended that caution be taken when using the currently available Landsat 8 cloud data over similar surfaces. View Full-Text
Keywords: Landsat 8; cloud; cirrus Landsat 8; cloud; cirrus
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Kovalskyy, V.; Roy, D.P. A One Year Landsat 8 Conterminous United States Study of Cirrus and Non-Cirrus Clouds. Remote Sens. 2015, 7, 564-578.

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