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Land Surface Temperature Focus Area Contributions to International Structures


GCOS target requirements for LST were set as follows (GCOS-200):

Variable/Parameter Horizontal Resolution Vertical Resolution Temporal Resolution Accuracy Stability
Land Surface Temperature 1 km N/A 3 hour 1 K < 0.1 K/decade

LPV LST contributes toward action items T35, T36, T42, T43, T44, T45, T46 (2016 IP, GCOS-200).

Copernicus LAW project

The Copernicus Space Component Validation for Land Surface Temperature, Aerosol Optical Depth and Water Vapor (LAW) Sentinel-3 Products Project started in January 2020 and is managed by ESA/ESRIN. Copernicus LAWaims to perform a more extensive and systematic validation against ground-based measurements of three Sentinel-3 datasets (Integrated Water Vapor, Aerosol Optical Depth, Land Surface Temperature). The validation will be followed by an analysis phase to better identify areas where the products are still limited. To foster the validation of satellite LST products against a wider variety of stations, five new LST stations are being deployed and match-ups between in-situ LST and S3 products will be made available via the project’s web portal.

Dragon 5 All-weather LST cooperation (NASCC / ESA)

The Dragon 5 cooperation ‘All-weather Land Surface Temperature at high spatial resolution: validation and applications’ aims to inter-compare and validate two new LST products (Zhang et al., 2019; Martins et al., 2019), which provide (nearly) gap-free all-weather LST at high spatial resolution. The two all-weather LST products and LST extracted from ERA5-Land data will be inter-compared and validated over selected regions in China, Europe, and Southern Africa. Within the framework of the cooperation an additional LST validation station will be set up and all-weather LST data will be used to simulate and study freeze / thaw cycles.

NASA MEaSUREs project

Making Earth System Data Records (ESDR) for Use in Research Environments (MEaSUREs) is a NASA initiative to build long-term, consistent data records across the globe. The LST&E project aims to provide long-term and continous records of LST from low earth orbit sensors (MODIS) and from geostationary orbit (GOES) since 2000, including a Combined ASTER and MODIS for Land (CAMEL) emissivity dataset providing global hyperspectral emissivities in the MIR-TIR wavelength ranges.

ESA LST CCI+ project

ESAs Climate Change Initiative (CCI) aims at contributing long-term and quality controlled observations to the needed data bases of these ECVs. The LST CCI project intends to provide an accurate view of LSTs over different land covers globally. Furthermore, the project will develop a long-term LST data record including various satellite LST data sets: the quality of these data sets will be ensured via validation with in-situ LST data.


The main purpose of EUMETSAT's Land Surface Analysis (LSA) Satellite Application Facility (SAF) is to increase the benefits from Meteosat Second Generation (MSG) and European Polar System (EPS) satellite data related to land, land-atmosphere interactions and biophysical applications. LSA SAF develops techniques, products and algorithms for a broad range of land biophysical applications and provides some well established LST products that are routinely validated with in-situ LST observations.

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