MERIS is a programmable, medium-spectral resolution imaging spectrometer operating in the solar reflective spectral range.
Principal Investigator (PI): Bryan Franz, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center
The European Space Agency (ESA) Medium Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MERIS) has been operating from the ESA Environmental Satellite (Envisat) since it was launched in 2002, producing global radiometric observations of the Earth in the visible to near-infrared spectral regime at a resolution of 1.2-km, with regional data collection at 300-meter resolution. MERIS is capable of producing data products similar to those of Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) and Sea-viewing Wide Field-of-view Sensor (SeaWiFS), to study land, ocean, and atmospheric processes and global change. Recently, ESA agreed to provide the full MERIS dataset of calibrated top-of-atmosphere radiances to NASA in exchange for the MODIS and SeaWiFS datasets.
This proposal seeks to develop full processing and distribution support for global ocean color products derived from the recently acquired MERIS Level-1B archive. Processing will be done using standard NASA software and algorithms identical to those employed for MODIS and SeaWiFS, and output products will be generated in standard NASA Level-2 and Level-3 formats. The resulting products will be used to support sensor time-series intercomparison and cross-calibration studies within NASA's Ocean Biology Distributed Active Archive Center (OB.DAAC), thus providing a valuable tool for assessing error in the multi-mission ocean color time-series that is now challenged by the ending of SeaWiFS operations in 2010 and significant degradation in the performance of the aging MODIS sensors.
The data products produced from MERIS will be made available to the public through the same distribution mechanisms currently available for all other NASA Ocean Color missions, with full user support and analysis tools, thus readily enhancing a host of on-going research and applications in Ocean Biology and Biogeochemistry and enabling new investigations that exploit the expanded coverage and unique features that MERIS contributes.