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Open AccessArticle

Radiometric Inter-Consistency of VIIRS DNB on Suomi NPP and NOAA-20 from Observations of Reflected Lunar Lights over Deep Convective Clouds

1
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)/Center for Satellite Applications and Research, College Park, MD 20740, USA
2
University of Maryland/Cooperative Institute for Climate Studies (CICS), College Park, MD 20740, USA
3
Global Science & Technology, Inc., Greenbelt, MD 20770, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Remote Sens. 2019, 11(8), 934; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs11080934
Received: 21 February 2019 / Revised: 8 April 2019 / Accepted: 11 April 2019 / Published: 17 April 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remote Sensing: 10th Anniversary)
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Abstract

The Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) Day/Night Band (DNB) is capable of observing reflected lunar radiances at night with its high gain stage (HGS), and the radiometric calibration is traceable to the sun through gain transfer from the low gain stage (LGS) calibrated near the terminator with the solar diffuser. Meanwhile, deep convective clouds (DCC) are known to have a stable reflectance in the visible spectral range. Therefore, the reflected lunar radiance at night from the DCC provides a unique dataset for the inter-calibration of VIIRS DNB on different satellites such as Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership (NPP) and NOAA-20, as well as quantifying the lunar radiance as a function of lunar phase angle. This study demonstrates a methodology for comparing nighttime Suomi NPP and NOAA-20 VIIRS DNB measured DCC reflected lunar radiance at various phase angles using data from July 2018 to March 2019 with an 86 second sampling interval and comparing Suomi NPP VIIRS DNB measured lunar radiances with those from lunar model predictions. The result shows good consistency between these two instruments on the two satellites, although a low bias in the NOAA-20 VIIRS DNB of ~5% is found. Also, observed lunar radiance from VIIRS DNB on Suomi NPP is found to be consistent with model predictions within 3% ± 5% (1σ) for a large range of lunar phase angles. However, discrepancies are significant near full moon, due to lunar opposition effects, and limitations of the lunar models. This study is useful not only for monitoring the DNB calibration stability and consistency across satellites, but also may help validate lunar models independently. View Full-Text
Keywords: VIIRS DNB; nighttime low light remote sensing; reflected lunar light; deep convective clouds; suomi NPP; NOAA-20; radiometric measurement consistency VIIRS DNB; nighttime low light remote sensing; reflected lunar light; deep convective clouds; suomi NPP; NOAA-20; radiometric measurement consistency
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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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Cao, C.; Bai, Y.; Wang, W.; Choi, T. Radiometric Inter-Consistency of VIIRS DNB on Suomi NPP and NOAA-20 from Observations of Reflected Lunar Lights over Deep Convective Clouds. Remote Sens. 2019, 11, 934.

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