Satellite instrument provides nighttime sensing capability

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Abstract

“This is not your father's low-light sensor,” Steve Miller, senior research scientist and deputy director of the Cooperative Institute for Research in the Atmosphere at Colorado State University, Fort Collins, said at a 5 December news briefing at the AGU Fall Meeting. He and others at the briefing were showing off the nighttime sensing capability of the day/night band of the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) of instruments onboard the Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership (NPP) Earth-observing research satellite, a joint NASA and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) satellite that was launched on 28 October 2011. Noting that low-light satellite technology has been available for about 40 years, Miller said that the VIIRS day/night band “is truly a paradigm shift in the technology and capability.”

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