The Atmospheric Emitted Radiance Interferometer (AERI) was used to measure the infrared radiative properties and the temperature of the Gulf of Mexico during a 5-day oceanographic cruise in January 1995. The ocean skin temperature was measured with an accuracy believed to be better than 0.1 °C. The surface reflectivity/emissivity was determined as a function of view angle and sea state. The radiative properties are in good theoretical consistency with in situ measurements of ocean bulk temperature and the meteorological observations made from the oceanographic vessel. The AERI and in situ measurements provide a strong basis for accurate global specifications of sea surface temperature and ocean heat flux from satellites and ships.

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*University of Wisconsin—Madison, Madison, Wisconsin.

+University of Miami, Coral Gables, Florida.

#Brookhaven National Laboratory, Upton, New York.

@Naval Research Laboratory, Washington, D.C.

&NOAA, National Environmental Satellite and Data Information Service, Madison, Wisconsin.