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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-2019-87
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-2019-87
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: data description paper 27 Aug 2019

Submitted as: data description paper | 27 Aug 2019

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. A revision of the manuscript is under review for the journal Earth System Science Data (ESSD).

Geometric accuracy assessment of global coarse resolution satellite data sets: a study based on AVHRR GAC data at the subpixel level

Xiaodan Wu1,2, Kathrin Naegeli2, and Stefan Wunderle2 Xiaodan Wu et al.
  • 1College of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou 730000, China
  • 2Institute of Geography and Oeschger Center for Climate Change Research, University of Bern,Hallerstrasse 12, 3012 Bern, Switzerland

Abstract. AVHRR GAC (Global Area Coverage) data provide daily global coverage of the Earth, which are widely used for global environmental and climate studies. However, their geolocation accuracy has not been comprehensively evaluated due to the difficulty caused by onboard resampling and the resulting coarse resolution, which hampers their usefulness in various applications. In this study, a Correlation-based Patch Matching Method (CPMM) was proposed to characterize and quantify the AVHRR GAC geo-location accuracy at the subpixel level. This method is not limited to landmarks and not suffer from errors caused by false detection due to the effect of mixed pixels, thus enables a more robust and comprehensive geometric assessment. Data of NOAA-17, MetOp-A, and MetOp-B satellites were selected to test the geocoding accuracy. The three satellites predominately present West shifts in the across-track direction, with average values of −1.69 km, −1.9 km, −2.56 km and standard deviations of 1.32 km, 1.1 km, 2.19 km for NOAA-17, MetOp-A, and MetOp-B, respectively. The large shifts and uncertainties are partly induced by the larger satellite zenith angles (SatZ) and partly due to the terrain effect, which is related to SatZ and becomes apparent in the case of large SatZ. It is thus suggested that GAC data with SatZ less than 40° should be preferred in applications. The along-track geolocation accuracy is clearly improved compared to the across-track direction, with average shifts of −0.7 km, −0.02 km, 0.96 km and standard deviations of 1.01 km, 0.79 km, 1.70 km for NOAA-17, MetOp-A, and MetOp-B, respectively.

Xiaodan Wu et al.
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Xiaodan Wu et al.
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Short summary
Based on the idea of the coregistration method, this study proposes a method named Correlation-based Patch Matching Method (CPMM), which is capable of quantifying the geometric accuracy of coarse resolution satellite data. The assessment is conducted at the sub-pixel level and not affected by the mixed pixel problem. It is not limited to a certain landmark such as a lake or sea shoreline, and thus enables a more comprehensive assessment.
Based on the idea of the coregistration method, this study proposes a method named...
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