How good are ocean buoy observations of radiative fluxes?



[1] Satellite-derived surface shortwave radiation (SWR) has been extensively evaluated against ground observations over land but to a lesser extent over oceans that cover larger portion of the Earth surface. In this study new surface radiative flux estimates from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectro-radiometer (MODIS) are evaluated against buoy measurements of downwelling SWR in the tropical oceans. As a benchmark for achievable accuracies from satellites, similar evaluation is performed over land against the Baseline Surface Radiation Network (BSRN) observations, believed to be of highest available quality. Comparable accuracy of the new satellite SWR data is found over land and over oceans.