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Achieving sub-pixel geolocation accuracy in support of MODIS land science

January 1, 2002

The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) was launched in December 1999 on the polar orbiting Terra spacecraft and since February 2000 has been acquiring daily global data in 36 spectral bands—29 with 1 km, five with 500 m, and two with 250 m nadir pixel dimensions. The Terra satellite has on-board exterior orientation (position and attitude) measurement systems designed to enable geolocation of MODIS data to approximately 150 m (1σ) at nadir. A global network of ground control points is being used to determine biases and trends in the sensor orientation. Biases have been removed by updating models of the spacecraft and instrument orientation in the MODIS geolocation software several times since launch and have improved the MODIS geolocation to approximately 50 m (1σ) at nadir. This paper overviews the geolocation approach, summarizes the first year of geolocation analysis, and overviews future work. The approach allows an operational characterization of the MODIS geolocation errors and enables individual MODIS observations to be geolocated to the sub-pixel accuracies required for terrestrial global change applications.

Publication Year 2002
Title Achieving sub-pixel geolocation accuracy in support of MODIS land science
DOI 10.1016/S0034-4257(02)00085-8
Authors R.E. Wolfe, M. Nishihama, A.J. Fleig, J.A. Kuyper, David P. Roy, James C. Storey, F.S. Patt
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Remote Sensing of Environment
Index ID 70024167
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center