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Why VIIRS data are superior to DMSP for mapping nighttime lights?

For more than forty years the U.S. Air Force Defense Meteorological Satellite Program (DMSP) Operational Linescan System (OLS) has been the only system collecting global low light imaging data. A series of twenty-four DMSP satellites have collected low light imaging data. The design of the OLS has not changed significantly since satellite F-4 flew in the late 1970’s and OLS data have relatively coarse spatial resolution, limited dynamic range, and lack in-flight calibration. In 2011 NASA and NOAA launched the Suomi National Polar Partnership (SNPP) satellite carrying the first Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) instrument. The VIIRS collects low light imaging data and has several improvements over the OLS’ capabilities. In this paper we contrast the nighttime low light imaging collection capabilities of these two systems and compare their data products.

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Additional Info

Field Value
Author(s) Christopher D. Elvidge, Kimberly Baugh, Mikhail Zhizhin, Feng Chi Hsu
Last Updated February 12, 2021, 17:30 (UTC)
Created October 8, 2020, 18:42 (UTC)
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Date 2013-01-01
Content Type Publications
Primary Category Demographics & Socioeconomics
Sub Category Socioeconomics
Country Name United States of America
Location-Region/City O'ahu