An intercalibrated Fundamental Climate Data Record (FCDR) of brightness temperatures (Tb) has been developed using data from a total of 14 research and operational conical-scanning microwave imagers. This dataset provides a consistent 30+ year data record of global observations that is well suited for retrieving estimates of precipitation, total precipitable water, cloud liquid water, ocean surface wind speed, sea ice extent and concentration, snow cover, soil moisture, and land surface emissivity. An initial FCDR was developed for a series of ten Special Sensor Microwave/Imager (SSM/I) and Special Sensor Microwave Imager Sounder (SSMIS) instruments on board the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program spacecraft. An updated version of this dataset, including additional NASA and Japanese sensors, has been developed as part of the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission. The FCDR development efforts involved quality control of the original data, geolocation corrections, calibration corrections to account for cross-track and time-dependent calibration errors, and intercalibration to ensure consistency with the calibration reference. Both the initial SSMI(S) and subsequent GPM Level 1C FCDR datasets are documented, updated in near real-time, and publicly distributed.
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