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Data Set ID:
NSIDC-0051

Sea Ice Concentrations from Nimbus-7 SMMR and DMSP SSM/I-SSMIS Passive Microwave Data, Version 1

This data set is generated from brightness temperature data and is designed to provide a consistent time series of sea ice concentrations spanning the coverage of several passive microwave instruments.The data are provided in the polar stereographic projection at a grid cell size of 25 x 25 km.

Geographic Coverage

Spatial Coverage:
  • N: -39.23, S: -90, E: 180, W: -180

  • N: 90, S: 30.98, E: 180, W: -180

Spatial Resolution:
  • 25 km x 25 km
Temporal Coverage:
  • 26 October 1978 to 31 December 2015
(updated yearly)
Temporal Resolution: 1 month, 1 day
Parameter(s):
  • Sea Ice > Sea Ice Concentration > Average Sea Ice Concentration
  • Sea Ice > Sea Ice Concentration
Platform(s) DMSP 5D-2/F11, DMSP 5D-2/F13, DMSP 5D-2/F8, DMSP 5D-3/F17, NIMBUS-7
Sensor(s): SMMR, SSM/I, SSMIS
Data Format(s):
  • Binary
  • PNG
Version: V1
Data Contributor(s): Claire Parkinson, Per Gloersen, H. Zwally, Donald Cavalieri, Walt Meier, F. Fetterer, Kenneth Knowles, Matthew Savoie, Mary Brodzik

Data Citation

As a condition of using these data, you must cite the use of this data set using the following citation. For more information, see our Use and Copyright Web page.

Cavalieri, D. J., C. L. Parkinson, P. Gloersen, and H. J. Zwally. 1996, updated yearly. Sea Ice Concentrations from Nimbus-7 SMMR and DMSP SSM/I-SSMIS Passive Microwave Data, Version 1. [Indicate subset used]. Boulder, Colorado USA. NASA National Snow and Ice Data Center Distributed Active Archive Center. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.5067/8GQ8LZQVL0VL. [Date Accessed].
No technical references available for this data set.

How To

How to import the NSIDC-0051 sea ice concentration data into ArcGIS

The following are instructions describing how to import "Sea Ice Concentrations from the Nimbus-7 SMMR and DMSP SSM/I-SSMIS Passive Microwave Data" binary files into ArcGIS. These instructions were tested with ArcInfo 10.0.

1. Rename the Data File.

In... read more

How to display and analyze the Sea Ice Concentrations from Nimbus-7 SMMR and DMSP SSM/I-SSMIS Passive Microwave Data

The Sea Ice Concentrations from Nimbus-7 SMMR and DMSP SSM/I-SSMIS Passive Microwave Data are distributed in gridded binary format. NSIDC provides IDL routines to ingest and read the data. These tools can be found at the... read more

How do I convert NSIDC-0051 sea-ice concentration data from binary to GeoTIFF?

You will first need to have GDAL installed on your system before proceeding on to the following steps. NSIDC User Services is not able to provide support for installing GDAL, but we have found using a package manager such as MacPorts (https://guide.... read more