Chapter

Earth Science Satellite Remote Sensing

pp 74-91

Introduction to MODIS Cloud Products

  • Bryan A. BaumAffiliated withAtmospheric Sciences Directorate, NASA Langley Research Center
  • , Steven PlatnickAffiliated withLaboratory for Atmospheres, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

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Abstract

The Earth’s radiative energy balance and hydrological cycle are fundamentally coupled with the distribution and properties of clouds. Therefore, the ability to remotely infer cloud properties and their variation in space and time is crucial for establishing climatologies as a reference for validation of present-day climate models and in assessing future climate change. Remote cloud observations also provide data sets useful for testing and improving cloud model physics, and for assimilation into numerical weather prediction models.