For on-orbit calibration of the Beijing-1 multispectral imagers (Beijing-1/MS), a field calibration campaign was performed at the Dunhuang calibration site during September and October of 2008. Based on the in situ
data and images from Beijing-1 and Terra/Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), three vicarious calibration methods (i.e.
, reflectance-based, irradiance-based, and cross-calibration) were used to calculate the top-of-atmosphere (TOA) radiance of Beijing-1. An analysis was then performed to determine or identify systematic and accidental errors, and the overall uncertainty was assessed for each individual method. The findings show that the reflectance-based method has an uncertainty of more than 10% if the aerosol optical depth (AOD) exceeds 0.2. The cross-calibration method is able to reach an error level within 7% if the images are selected carefully. The final calibration coefficients were derived from the irradiance-based data for 6 September 2008, with an uncertainty estimated to be less than 5%.