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Catherine Prigent, Filipe Aires, and William B. Rossow

Microwave land surface emissivities have been calculated over the globe for ~10 yr between 19 and 85 GHz at 53° incidence angle for both orthogonal polarizations, using satellite observations from the Special Sensor Microwave Imager (SSM/I). Ancillary data (IR satellite observations and meteorological reanalysis) help remove the contribution from the atmosphere, clouds, and rain from the measured satellite signal and separate surface temperature from emissivity variations. The method to calculate the emissivity is general and can be applied to other sensors. The monthly mean emissivities are available for the community, with a 0.25° × 0.25° spatial resolution.

The emissivities are sensitive to variations of the vegetation density, the soil moisture, the presence of standing water at the surface, or the snow behavior, and can help characterize the land surface properties.

These emissivities (not illustrated in this paper) also allow for improved atmospheric retrieval over land and can help evaluate land surface emissivity models at global scales.

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Stephen English, Catherine Prigent, Ben Johnson, Simon Yueh, Emmanuel Dinnat, Jacqueline Boutin, Stuart Newman, Magdalena Anguelova, Thomas Meissner, Masahiro Kazumori, Fuzhong Weng, Alexandre Supply, Lise Kilic, Michael Bettenhausen, Ad Stoffelen, and Christophe Accadia
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Vinia Mattioli, Christophe Accadia, Catherine Prigent, Susanne Crewell, Alan Geer, Patrick Eriksson, Stuart Fox, Juan R. Pardo, Eli J. Mlawer, Maria Cadeddu, Michael Bremer, Carlos De Breuck, Alain Smette, Domenico Cimini, Emma Turner, Mario Mech, Frank S. Marzano, Pascal Brunel, Jerome Vidot, Ralf Bennartz, Tobias Wehr, Sabatino Di Michele, and Viju O. John
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