Chang, TJ; Xiong, XX; Shrestha, A; Diaz, CP (2020). Methodology Development for Calibration Assessment Using Quasi-Deep Convective Clouds With Application to Aqua MODIS TEB. EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE, 7(1), UNSP e2019EA001055.

Deep convective clouds (DCC) are identified by using a combination of brightness temperature (BT) and visible reflectance thresholds. Moreover, it is common practice to use daytime DCC measurements for the calibration assessment of reflective solar and longwave infrared bands. The DCC cold core is suitable for the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) thermal emissive bands (TEB) calibration assessment; more specifically, for the offset effect in the quadratic calibration function. However, the reflected solar radiance in the daytime DCC measurements affects the midwave infrared bands. Thus, an assessment over low-BT measurements is not applicable to these bands. Because of this, a quasi-DCC (qDCC) technique is developed for the midwave infrared bands calibration assessment. The feasibility of using nighttime DCC measurements is demonstrated by comparing the DCC and daytime qDCC techniques. A DCC normalization method is also developed to remove the DCC fluctuation impact and enhance the assessment accuracy. The DCC measurements' distribution is asymmetrical for all TEB, and their BT ranges fluctuate around 20 K. An empirical model is developed and applied to normalize the measurements over DCC to a reference temperature. After the normalization, the DCC and qDCC measurements' distributions are close to symmetrical and Gaussian in shape. These improvements are applied to the Aqua MODIS instrument. The calibration stability, noise performance, and consistency are evaluated for all Aqua MODIS TEB. Lastly, the Aqua MODIS formatter reset effect on the calibration offset bias between two mirror sides is analyzed, and a calibration coefficient correction is proposed for future calibration improvements.