VIIRS Land Team
Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite
Suomi NPP was launched at 5:48 a.m. EDT on Oct. 28, 2011, from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, with 5 key instruments, including VIIRS. The VIIRS sensor is a component of the Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership (NPP) satellite. The Joint Polar Satellite System (JPSS), a NOAA/NASA program, and the Defense Weather Satellite System, a U.S. Air Force program, were tasked with the next generation requirements for environmental research, weather forecasting and climate monitoring measurement capabilities that Suomi NPP represents.
Since 2004, scientists funded by NOAA and NASA, have been evaluating and validating the JPSS VIIRS Land operational products. Prior to launch, these products were created by applying VIIRS code to Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) data. In 2014, based on this long period of product evaluation, NASA independently embarked on a program to create enhanced operational products, as well as additional products not included in the NOAA operational suite, to provide dynamic continuity with the long established MODIS data record.
Dual Data Processing Streams
Thus, there are two sets of land products currently being generated from VIIRS. There is a suite of environmental data records (EDRs), produced by NOAA, to meet operational data needs, primarily for the National Weather Service. There exists another data processing stream from NASA. This stream produces the Earth System Data Records (ESDRs), developed to meet the needs of the global change science community. In this way, VIIRS extends and improves upon a series of measurements initiated by its predecessors, the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) and MODIS.
VIIRS Browse Imagery