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Vicarious calibration of ASTER thermal infrared bands

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4 Author(s)

The Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) on the Terra satellite has five bands in the thermal infrared (TIR) spectral region between 8-12 μm. The TIR bands have been regularly validated in-flight using ground validation targets. Validation results are presented from 79 experiments conducted under clear sky conditions. Validation involved predicting the at-sensor radiance for each band using a radiative transfer model, driven by surface and atmospheric measurements from each experiment, and then comparing the predicted radiance with the ASTER measured radiance. The results indicate the average difference between the predicted and the ASTER measured radiances was no more than 0.5% or 0.4 K in any TIR band, demonstrating that the TIR bands have exceeded the preflight design accuracy of <1 K for an at-sensor brightness temperature range of 270-340 K. The predicted and the ASTER measured radiances were then used to assess how well the onboard calibration accounted for any changes in both the instrument gain and offset over time. The results indicate that the gain and offset were correctly determined using the onboard blackbody, and indicate a responsivity decline over the first 1400 days of the Terra mission.

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing  (Volume:43 ,  Issue: 12 )