National Geophysical Data Center (NGDC), NOAA Satellite and Information Service

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DMSP OLS - Operational Linescan System

Visible and infrared imagery from DMSP Operational Linescan System (OLS) instruments are used to monitor the global distribution of clouds and cloud top temperatures twice each day. The archive data set consists of low resolution global and high resolution regional, imagery recorded along a 3,000 km scan, satellite ephemeris and solar and lunar information. Infrared pixel values correspond to a temperature range of 190 to 310 Kelvins in 256 equally spaced steps. Onboard calibration is performed during each scan. Visible pixels are relative values ranging from 0 to 63 rather than absolute values in Watts per m^2. Instrumental gain levels are adjusted to maintain constant cloud reference values under varying conditions of solar and lunar illumination. Telescope pixel values are replaced by Photo Multiplier Tube (PMT) values at night. A telescope pixel is 0.55 km at high resolution (fine mode) and 2.7 km at low resolution(smooth mode). Low resolution values are the mean of the appropriate 25 high resolution values.

Cite this dataset when used as a source.

Dataset Information
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    Distribution Formats
      Distributor DOC/NOAA/NESDIS/NGDC > National Geophysical Data Center, NESDIS, NOAA, U.S. Department of Commerce
      Point of Contact DMSP Data Manager
      DOC/NOAA/NESDIS/NGDC > National Geophysical Data Center, NESDIS, NOAA, U.S. Department of Commerce
      303.497.3053
      ngdc.dmsp@noaa.gov
      Documentation links not available.
      Originator
      • DOD/USAF/AFWA > Air Force Weather Agency, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Department of Defense
      Originator
      • DOC/NOAA/NESDIS/NGDC > National Geophysical Data Center, NESDIS, NOAA, U.S. Department of Commerce (comp)
      Publisher
      • National Geophysical Data Center
      Date(s)
      • publication: 1992-01-01
      Dataset Progress Status Under development
      Data Update Frequency: Daily
      Supplemental Information: NGDC currently receives 8.5 Gb of data from AFWA over a designated T1 line. OLS data has been processed and quality controlled within since the end of March 1994. A low resolution scan line consists of 1,465 visible pixels, 1,465 IR pixels, satellite ephemeris, a quality assessment and other satellite and astronomical parameters. A high resolution scan line contains 7,325 pixels amd the same supporting information.
      Purpose: Earth and Near-Earth Environment Research
      Use Limitations
      • While every effort has been made to ensure that these data are accurate and reliable within the limits of the current state of the art, NOAA cannot assume liability for any damages caused by any errors or omissions in the data, nor as a result of the failure of the data to function on a particular system. NOAA makes no warranty, expressed or implied, nor does the fact of distribution constitute such a warranty.
      Time Period: 1975-04-01  to  Present
      Spatial Bounding Box Coordinates:
      N: 90.000000
      S: -90.000000
      E: 180.000000
      W: -180.000000
      Spatial Coverage Map:
      Themes
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Sun-earth Interactions > Ionosphere/Magnetosphere Particles
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Sun-earth Interactions > Ionosphere/Magnetosphere Particles > Electron Flux
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Sun-earth Interactions > Ionosphere/Magnetosphere Particles > Proton Flux
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Sun-earth Interactions > Ionosphere/Magnetosphere Particles > Particle Density
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Sun-earth Interactions > Ionosphere/Magnetosphere Particles > Particle Speed
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Sun-earth Interactions > Ionosphere/Magnetosphere Particles > Particle Temperature
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Spectral/Engineering > Visible Wavelengths
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Spectral/Engineering > Infrared Wavelengths
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Spectral/Engineering > Microwave
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Atmosphere > Clouds
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Atmosphere > Atmospheric Water Vapor > Water Vapor
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Atmosphere > Atmospheric Temperature
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Atmosphere > Precipitation
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Spectral/Engineering > Microwave > Brightness Temperature
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Hydrosphere > Surface Water
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Oceans > Ocean Winds
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Oceans > Sea Ice
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Biosphere > Ecological Dynamics > Fire Occurrence
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Hydrosphere > Snow/Ice
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Hydrosphere > Surface Water > Lakes
      • EARTH SCIENCE > Hydrosphere > Surface Water > Rivers/Streams
      • DMSP
      • Global Change
      • Meteorological Satellites
      • Satellite Meteorology
      • Polar Orbiters
      • WDC/STP, BOULDER > World Data Center for Solar-Terrestrial Physics, Boulder
      • DOC/NOAA/NESDIS/NGDC > National Geophysical Data Center, NESDIS, NOAA, U.S. Department of Commerce
      Places
      • Global
      Use Constraints
      • Use Constraints: None
      Access Constraints
      • Access Constraints: No Constraints
      Fees
      • $18.00 plus handling and possible shipping charge for all non-US orders $18.00 plus handling and shipping outside the USA $18.00 plus handling and shipping outside the USA $18.00 plus handling and shipping outside the USA $18.00 plus handling and shipping outside the USA $25.00 plus handling and shipping outside the USA $25.00 plus handling and shipping outside the USA $25.00 plus handling and shipping outside the USA $25.00 plus handling and shipping outside the USA $25.00 plus handling and shipping outside the USA $25.00 plus handling and shipping outside the USA $25.00 plus handling and shipping outside the USA $25.00 plus handling and shipping outside the USA $25.00 plus handling and shipping outside the USA $25.00 plus handling and shipping outside the USA $25.00 plus handling and shipping outside the USA $25.00 plus handling and shipping outside the USA $25.00 plus handling and shipping outside the USA $18.00 plus handling and shipping outside the USA
      Source Datasets
      • DMSP Raw Data Records (RDR)
        • Description of Source: Source Contribution: DMSP Raw Data Files Source Type: digital database file
        • Temporal extent used:  1992-01-01  to  present
      Lineage Statement Lineage statement not available.
      Processor
      • DOC/NOAA/NESDIS/NGDC > National Geophysical Data Center, NESDIS, NOAA, U.S. Department of Commerce
      Processing Steps
      • OLS data are decompressed, reordered, restructured and deinterleaved. Satellite ephemeris are computed using a four body orbital mechanics program with observed, rather than predicted, orbital elements used as input. Missing scan lines are correctly positioned. Quality assessments are made of each pixel and characterized for the each complete scan line.

      Metadata Last Modified: 2011-11-09

      For questions about the information on this page, please email: ngdc.dmsp@noaa.gov