Narrow channels located in the longwave IR CO2
absorption region between approximately 13.2 and 14.5 μm, the well known CO2
slicing channels, have been proven to be quite effective for the estimates of cloud heights and effective cloud amounts as well as atmospheric temperature profiles. The designs of some of the near-future multi-channel earth observing satellite sensors cannot accommodate these longwave IR channels. Based on the analysis of the multi-channel imaging data collected with the NASA Moderate Resolution Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MODIS) instrument and on theoretical cloud radiative transfer modeling, we have found that narrow channels located at the midwave IR region between approximately 4.2 and 4.55 μm, where the combined CO2
O absorption effects decrease rapidly with increasing wavelength, have similar properties as the longwave IR CO2
slicing channels. The scattering of solar radiation by clouds on the long wavelength side of the 4.3 μm CO2
absorption makes only a small contribution to the upwelling radiances. In order to retain the crucial cloud and temperature sensing capabilities, future satellite sensors should consider including midwave IR CO2
O slicing channels if the longwave IR channels cannot be implemented on the sensors. The hyperspectral data covering the 3.7-15.5 mm wavelength range and measured with the Infrared Atmospheric Sounding Interferometer (IASI) can be used to further assess the utility of midwave IR channels for satellite remote sensing.