Land surface temperature from multiple geostationary satellites

Freitas S.C., Trigo I.F., Macedo J., Barroso C., Silva R., Perdigao R.
International Journal of Remote Sensing, Volume 34, Issue: 9-10, 3051-3068, DOI: 10.1080/01431161.2012.716925

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This article provides a description of a land surface temperature (LST) data set generated (and provided in near-real-time or offline) based on infrared data from sensors onboard different geostationary (GEO) satellites: Meteosat Second Generation (MSG), Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES), and Multifunction Transport Satellite (MTSAT). Given the different characteristics of the imagers onboard each GEO platform, different algorithmic methodologies for the retrieval of LST are presented and implemented namely the Generalized Split-Window (GSW) algorithm and the Dual Algorithm (DA) in its mono- and dual-channel forms using semi-empirical functions that relate LST to top-of-atmosphere brightness temperatures in infrared window channels. The assumptions and physics underlying each methodology, as well as the uncertainties of LST estimates, are discussed. The formulations are trained using a data set of radiative transfer simulations for a wide range of atmospheric and surface conditions. The performance of each algorithm is then assessed by comparing its output against an independent set of simulations, suggesting that product uncertainties range from 2C (for GSW and the two-channel algorithm) to 4C (for the one-channel algorithm). Finally, LST retrievals from different GEO satellites are merged into a single field. In overlapping areas, the average discrepancies between LST products derived from GOES and from the Spinning Enhanced Visible and Infrared Imager (SEVIRI) onboard MSG are within 1C during night-time, but may reach 3C during daytime. Over those areas, the merged LST field is obtained as a weighted average of available LST retrievals for the same time slot, taking into account the respective error bar.