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Digital SAR Mosaic and Elevation Map of the Greenland Ice Sheet

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Entry ID

NSIDC-0052

Summary

The Digital SAR Mosaic and Elevation Map of the Greenland Ice Sheet CD-ROM combines the most detailed synthetic aperture radar (SAR) image mosaic available with the best current digital elevation model. The mosaic image shows both the location of the ice edge and the distribution of melt-related 'scatterers' on the surface. These scatterers include ice lenses and complex layered structure in the percolation zone and bare ice of the ablation zone. Other melt-related features that can be seen include lake and surface meltwater stream channels at lower elevations, as well as ice-marginal lakes.

This characterization of the ice sheet provides a reference against which future change can be measured. Changing conditions resulting from climatic variation should show up as changes in the ice margin and shifts in the hydrologic zones. It is hoped that the standard reference provided by this data set can facilitate activities aimed at change detection and promote other work aimed at understanding the processes operating on the ice sheet.

The image data are derived from SAR image swaths acquired by the ERS-1 satellite during August of 1992. The mosaic was assembled at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC). Its component images are a copyrighted product of the European Space Agency. The mosaic, a value-added derived product, is available to individuals and non-profit organizations for research oriented purposes only. The Danish geodetic and cadastral agency Kort-og Matrikelstyrelsen (KMS) compiled the elevation data provided with the product from a number of sources, including field surveys, aerial photographs, and the ERS-1 radar altimeter. The elevation data are also provided only to individuals and non-profit organizations for research oriented purposes. Included with the data is NSIDC's limb (large image map browser) software, which was developed in-house and allows UNIX users to easily select and view portions of the mosaic image with elevation contours derived from the elevation data overlain. Limb is provided as 'freeware' for general use. NSIDC distributes the Digital SAR Mosaic and Elevation Map of the Greenland Ice Sheet on CD-ROM at no charge.

Geographic Coverage

 

Spatial Coordinates:
N: 84°     S: 60°     E: -10°     W: -73°     Min Altitude: 0 meters     Max Altitude: 3251.4 meters    

Multimedia Sample


A low-resolution sample view of the DEM and Radar image coverage.


Data Set Citation

Dataset Creator: Fahnestock, Mark, Simon Ekholm, Kenneth Knowles, Ron Kwok, Ted Scambos
Dataset Title: Digital SAR Mosaic and Elevation Map of the Greenland Ice Sheet
Dataset Release Date: 1997-01-01
Dataset Release Place: Boulder, Colorado USA
Dataset Publisher: NSIDC: National Snow and Ice Data Center
Online Resource: http://nsidc.org/data/nsidc-0052.html

Temporal Coverage

Start Date: 1992-08-02
Stop Date: 1992-09-09

Start Date: 1991-01-01
Stop Date: 1995-12-31

Data Resolution

Latitude Resolution: 100 m
Longitude Resolution: 100 m

Latitude Resolution: 2 km
Longitude Resolution: 2 km
Vertical Resolution: 13 m

Location Keywords

  • CONTINENT NORTH AMERICA GREENLAND

Science Keywords

  • Cryosphere Glaciers/Ice Sheets Glacier Elevation/Ice Sheet Elevation
  • Cryosphere Glaciers/Ice Sheets Glacier Elevation/Ice Sheet Elevation
  • Cryosphere Glaciers/Ice Sheets Glacier Topography/Ice Sheet Topography
  • Cryosphere Glaciers/Ice Sheets Glacier Topography/Ice Sheet Topography
  • Cryosphere Glaciers/Ice Sheets Ice Sheets
  • Cryosphere Glaciers/Ice Sheets Ice Sheets
  • Cryosphere Sea Ice Ice Edges
  • Cryosphere Sea Ice Ice Edges
  • Oceans Sea Ice Ice Edges
  • Oceans Sea Ice Ice Edges
  • Spectral/Engineering Radar Radar Backscatter
  • Spectral/Engineering Radar Radar Backscatter
  • Spectral/Engineering Radar Radar Cross-section
  • Spectral/Engineering Radar Radar Cross-section
  • Spectral/Engineering Radar Radar Imagery
  • Spectral/Engineering Radar Radar Imagery
  • Spectral/Engineering Radar Radar Reflectivity
  • Spectral/Engineering Radar Radar Reflectivity
  • Spectral/Engineering Radar Return Power
  • Spectral/Engineering Radar Return Power
  • Terrestrial Hydrosphere Glaciers/Ice Sheets Glacier Elevation/Ice Sheet Elevation
  • Terrestrial Hydrosphere Glaciers/Ice Sheets Glacier Elevation/Ice Sheet Elevation
  • Terrestrial Hydrosphere Glaciers/Ice Sheets Glacier Topography/Ice Sheet Topography
  • Terrestrial Hydrosphere Glaciers/Ice Sheets Glacier Topography/Ice Sheet Topography
  • Terrestrial Hydrosphere Glaciers/Ice Sheets Ice Sheets
  • Terrestrial Hydrosphere Glaciers/Ice Sheets Ice Sheets

ISO Topic Category (View Definitions)

  • Elevation
  • Geoscientific Information
  • Imagery/Base Maps/Earth Cover
  • Inland Waters

Platform

  • ERS-1 European Remote Sensing Satellite-1
  • GEOSAT Geodetic Satellite

Instrument

  • RADAR ALTIMETERS
  • SAR Synthetic Aperture Radar
  • VISUAL OBSERVATIONS

Project

  • EOSDIS Earth Observing System Data Information System
  • ESIP Earth Science Information Partners Program

Quality

The accuracy and precision of the DEM is not adequate for the detection of real ice surface elevation changes over time, and thus the DEM should not be used for such purposes. Additional processing would be necessary before the DEM could be used as part of a scheme for elevation change detection.

Access Constraints

This data set is available for non-profit, research-oriented purposes only. Prospective users of the product are required to complete a Research Agreement stating that the image and elevation data will be only be used under the specified terms and conditions.

Use Constraints

For non-profit, research-oriented purposes only.

Data Set Progress

complete

Originating Center

NSIDC

Data Center

NASA DAAC at the National Snow and Ice Data Center
Data Center URL: http://nsidc.org/daac/index.html

Data Center Personnel

Name: NSIDC User Services
Phone: 1 303 492-6199
Fax: 1 303 492-2468
Email: nsidc@nsidc.org
Contact Address:

  • National Snow and Ice Data Center
  • CIRES, 449 UCB
  • University of Colorado

City: Boulder
Province or State: CO
Postal Code: 80309-0449
Country: USA

National Snow and Ice Data Center
Data Center URL: http://nsidc.org

Data Center Personnel

Name: NSIDC User Services
Phone: 1 303 492-6199
Fax: 1 303 492-2468
Email: nsidc@nsidc.org
Contact Address:

  • National Snow and Ice Data Center
  • CIRES, 449 UCB
  • University of Colorado

City: Boulder
Province or State: CO
Postal Code: 80309-0449
Country: USA

Distribution

Distribution Media: CD-ROM
Distribution Format: Binary

Personnel

NSIDC User Services
Role: TECHNICAL CONTACT
Phone: 1 303 492-6199 x
Fax: 1 303 492-2468 x
Email: nsidc@nsidc.org
Contact Address:

  • National Snow and Ice Data Center
  • CIRES, 449 UCB
  • University of Colorado

City: Boulder
Province or State: CO
Postal Code: 80309-0449
Country: USA

Mark Fahnestock
Role: INVESTIGATOR
Phone: 1 603 862-0322
Email: mark.fahnestock@unh.edu
Contact Address:

  • University of New Hampshire
  • Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space
  • University of New Hampshire
  • 39 College Road

City: Durham
Province or State: NH
Postal Code: 03824-3525
Country: USA

Simon Ekholm
Role: INVESTIGATOR
Contact Address:

  • Kort-og Matrikelstyrelsen
  • (KMS, National Survey and Cadastre)

City: Copenhagen
Country: Denmark

Kenneth Knowles
Role: INVESTIGATOR
Contact Address:

  • National Snow and Ice Data Center
  • National Snow and Ice Data Center
  • CIRES, 449 UCB
  • University of Colorado

City: Boulder
Province or State: CO
Postal Code: 80309-0449
Country: USA

Ron Kwok
Role: INVESTIGATOR
Contact Address:

  • Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL)
  • California Institute of Technology

City: Pasadena
Province or State: CA
Country: USA

Ted Scambos
Role: INVESTIGATOR
Email: scambos@nsidc.org
Contact Address:

  • University of Colorado
  • Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Science
  • National Snow and Ice Data Center
  • CIRES, 449 UCB

City: Boulder
Province or State: CO
Postal Code: 80309-0449

Mike Meshek
Role: INVESTIGATOR
Contact Address:

  • National Snow and Ice Data Center
  • CIRES, 449 UCB
  • University of Colorado

City: Boulder
Province or State: CO
Postal Code: 80309-0449
Country: USA

Related URL

VIEW PROJECT HOME PAGE
Online documentation.

VIEW PROJECT HOME PAGE
Research agreement that prospective users of the product are required to complete stating that the image and elevation data will be only be used under the specified terms and conditions.

VIEW RELATED INFORMATION
Polar Ice Sheet DEMs and Elevation Data

Reference

Andersen, Ole Baltazar. 1994. ERS-1 altimetry on the Greenland ice sheet: Preliminary investigations of annual variations. Geophysical Research Letters 21(15):1655-1658.

Binschadler, R. A., and P. L. Vornberger. 1993. Interpretation of SAR imagery of the Greenland ice sheet using coregistered TM imagery. Remote Sensing of Environment 167-175.

Ekholm, S. 1996. A full coverage, high-resolution topographic model of Greenland computed from a variety of digital elevation data. Journal of Geophysical Research 101(B10):21961-21972.

Ekholm, S., R. Forsberg, and J. M. Brozena. 1995. Accuracy of satellite altimeter elevations over the Greenland ice sheet. Journal of Geophysical Research 100(C2):2687-2696.

Fahnestock, M. A., and R. A. Bindschadler. 1993. Description of a program for SAR investigation of the Greenland ice sheet and an example of margin change detection using SAR. Annals of Glaciology 39(131): 119-132.

Fahnestock, M., R. Bindschadler, R. Kwok, and K. Jezek. 1993. Greenland ice sheet surface properties and ice dynamics from ERS-1 SAR imagery. Science 262:1530-1534.

Fahnestock, M., R. Bindschadler, R. Kwok, and K. Jezek. 1993. Greenland ice sheet surface properties and ice dynamics from ERS-1 SAR imagery.Science 262: 1525-1530.

Jezek, K. C., and S. Grace. 1991. Synthetic Aperture Radar observations of the Greenland ice sheet. EOS Suppl., p. 150.

Jezek, K. C. 1992. Spatial patterns in radar backscatter strength across the Greenland ice sheet. EOS Suppl., p. 181.

Jezek, K. C., and S. P. Gogineni. 1992. Microwave remote sensing of the Greenland ice sheet. IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Newsletter 9:6-10.

Jezek, K. C., M. R. Drinkwater, J. P. Crawford, R. Bindschadler, and R. Kwok. 1993. Analysis of Synthetic Aperture Radar data collected over the southwestern Greenland ice sheet. Journal of Glaciology 39(131): 115-132.

Jezek, K. C., P. Gogineni, and M. Chanableh. 1994. Radar measurements of melt zones on the Greenland ice sheet. Geophysical Research Letters 21(1): 33-36.

Knowles, K. 1992. Points, Pixels, Grids, and Cells: A Mapping and Gridding Primer. Unpublished report to the National Snow and Ice Data Center, Boulder, CO.

Rignot, E. J., S. J. Austria, J. J. V. Zyl, and K. C. Jezek. 1993. Unusual radar echoes from the Greenland ice sheet. Science 261:1710-1713.

Rignot, E., J. V. Zyl, S. Ostro, and K. C. Jezek. 1993. Unusual radar echoes from the percolation zone of the Greenland ice sheet. EOS Suppl., p. 247.

Rignot, E. 1995. Backscatter model for the unusual radar properties of the Greenland ice sheet. Journal of Geophysical Research 100(E5): 9389-9400.

Simonett, D. S., F. T. Ulaby, J. E. Estes, and G. A. Thorley, eds. 1983. Manual of remote sensing, Falls Church, Virginia: American Society of Photogrammetry.

Vornberger, P. L., and R. A. Bindschadler. 1992. Multi-spectral analysis of ice sheets using co-registered SAR and TM imagery. International Journal of Remote Sensing 13(4): 637-645.

Zwally, R. A. Bindschadler, A. C. Brenner, and R. H. Thomas. 1983. Surface elevation contours of Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets. Journal of Geophysical Research 88: 1589-1596.

Metadata Name and Version

Metadata Name: CEOS IDN DIF
Metadata Version: 9.7

Creation and Review Dates

DIF Creation Date: 1997-01-01
Last DIF Revision Date: 2012-07-30

Metadata Views

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Directory Interchange Format (DIF) in plain text

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Directory Interchange Format (DIF) in Extensible Markup Language (XML)

FGDC HTML

U.S. Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC) Content Standard for Digital Geospatial Metadata (CSDGM)

ISO HTML

International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 19115:2003 Geographic Information Metadata

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