NASA Distributed Active Archive Center (DAAC) at NSIDC

Sea Ice Data

Sea Ice Data from a Variety of Sensors and Sources

Data Summaries: Passive Microwave Sea Ice Products

NSIDC archives and distributes a variety of passive microwave sea ice products. The products are grouped in the following categories:

For sea ice products derived from visible and infrared sensors, or for sea ice field observations and operational charts, refer to:

Polar Stereographic Sea Ice Concentrations

NOAA/NSIDC Climate Data Record of Passive Microwave Sea Ice Concentration

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No Image Available Spatial Coverage: Northern: N: 89.84° S: 31.1° E: 180° W: -180°
  Southern: N: -39.36° S: -89.84° E: 180° W: -180°
Temporal Coverage: 26 October 1978 – 31 December 2007
Parameters: Sea Ice Concentration

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Platform(s):

  • DMSP Defense Meteorological Satellite Program
  • DMSP 5D-2/F11 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F11
  • DMSP 5D-2/F13 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F13
  • DMSP 5D-2/F8 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F8
  • NIMBUS-7

Sensor(s):

  • SMMR Scanning Multichannel Microwave Radiometer
  • SSM/I Special Sensor Microwave/Imager

Data Resolution:

Spatial: 25 km
Temporal: Daily, Monthly

Data Format:

NetCDF4 CF-1.5

More Information:

Metadata | Documentation

Data Access:

FTP

Data Set Creator(s):

W. Meier

Bootstrap Sea Ice Concentrations from Nimbus-7 SMMR and DMSP SSM/I

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Sample Image Spatial Coverage: Northern: N: 90° S: 30° E: 180° W: -180°
  Southern: N: -39° S: -90° E: 180° W: -180°
Temporal Coverage: 26 October 1978 – Approximately Previous Year
Parameters: Sea Ice Concentration

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Platform(s):

  • DMSP 5D-3/F17 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F17
  • DMSP 5D-2/F13 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F13
  • DMSP 5D-2/F11 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F11
  • DMSP 5D-2/F8 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F8
  • NIMBUS-7

Sensor(s):

  • SSMIS Special Sensor Microwave Imager/Sounder
  • SSM/I Special Sensor Microwave/Imager
  • SMMR Scanning Multichannel Microwave Radiometer

Data Resolution:

Spatial: 25 km
Temporal: Daily, every other day, monthly

Data Format:

Flat binary (2-byte integer)

More Information:

Metadata | Documentation

Data Access:

FTP

Data Set Creator(s):

J. Comiso

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

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Sample Image Spatial Coverage: Northern: N: 90° S: 30.98° E: 180° W: -180°
  Southern: N: -39.23° S: -90° E: 180° W: -180°
Temporal Coverage: 26 October 1978 – Approximately Previous Year
Parameters: Sea Ice Concentration

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Platform(s):

  • DMSP 5D-3/F17 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F17
  • DMSP 5D-2/F13 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F13
  • DMSP 5D-2/F11 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F11
  • DMSP 5D-2/F8 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F8
  • NIMBUS-7

Sensor(s):

  • SSMIS Special Sensor Microwave Imager/Sounder
  • SSM/I Special Sensor Microwave/Imager
  • SMMR Scanning Multichannel Microwave Radiometer

Data Resolution:

Spatial: 25 km
Temporal: Daily, monthly, every other day

Data Format:

Binary (scaled, unsigned 1-byte integer)

More Information:

Metadata | Documentation

Data Access:

FTP | Polaris

Data Set Creator(s):

W. Meier, D. Cavalieri

AMSR-E/Aqua Daily L3 12.5 km Brightness Temperature, Sea Ice Concentration, & Snow Depth Polar Grids

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Sample Image Spatial Coverage: Northern: N: 90° S: 30.98° E: 180° W: -180°
  Southern: N: -39.23° S: -90° E: 180° W: -180°
Temporal Coverage: 19 June 2002 – 03 October 2011
Parameters: Brightness Temperature, Sea Ice Concentration, Snow Depth

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Platform(s):

  • AQUA Earth Observing System, AQUA

Sensor(s):

  • AMSR-E Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer-EOS

Data Resolution:

Spatial: 12.5 km
Temporal: Daily

Data Format:

HDF-EOS

More Information:

Metadata | Documentation

Data Access:

Order Data

Data Set Creator(s):

D. Cavalieri, T. Markus, J. Comiso

AMSR-E/Aqua Daily L3 25 km Brightness Temperature & Sea Ice Concentration Polar Grids

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Sample Image Spatial Coverage: Northern: N: 90° S: 30.98° E: 180° W: -180°
  Southern: N: -39.23° S: -90° E: 180° W: -180°
Temporal Coverage: 19 June 2002 – 03 October 2011
Parameters: Brightness Temperature, Sea Ice Concentration

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Platform(s):

  • AQUA Earth Observing System, AQUA

Sensor(s):

  • AMSR-E Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer-EOS

Data Resolution:

Spatial: 25 km
Temporal: Daily

Data Format:

HDF-EOS

More Information:

Metadata | Documentation

Data Access:

Order Data

Data Set Creator(s):

D. Cavalieri, T. Markus, J. Comiso

Near-Real-Time DMSP SSM/I-SSMIS Daily Polar Gridded Sea Ice Concentrations

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Sample Image Spatial Coverage: Northern: N: 90° S: 30.98° E: 180° W: -180°
  Southern: N: -39.23° S: -90° E: 180° W: -180°
Temporal Coverage: Approximately Previous Day
Parameters: Sea Ice Concentration

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Platform(s):

  • DMSP 5D-3/F17 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F17
  • DMSP 5D-2/F15 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F15
  • DMSP 5D-2/F13 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F13

Sensor(s):

  • SSMIS Special Sensor Microwave Imager/Sounder
  • SSM/I Special Sensor Microwave/Imager

Data Resolution:

Spatial: 25 km
Temporal: Daily

Data Format:

Flat binary (scaled 1-byte integer)

More Information:

Metadata | Documentation

Data Access:

FTP | Polaris

Data Set Creator(s):

J. Maslanik, J. Stroeve

Nimbus-5 ESMR Polar Gridded Sea Ice Concentrations

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Sample Image Spatial Coverage: Northern: N: 90° S: 30.98° E: 180° W: -180°
  Southern: N: -39.23° S: -90° E: 180° W: -180°
Temporal Coverage: 12 December 1972 – 31 December 1976
Parameters: Sea Ice Concentration

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Platform(s):

  • NIMBUS-5

Sensor(s):

  • ESMR Electrically Scanning Microwave Radiometer

Data Resolution:

Spatial: 25 km
Temporal: Daily, monthly

Data Format:

HDF

More Information:

Metadata | Documentation

Data Access:

FTP

Data Set Creator(s):

C. Parkinson, J. Comiso, J. Zwally

Sea Ice Index

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Sample Image Spatial Coverage: Northern: N: 90° S: 30.98° E: 180° W: -180°
  Southern: N: -39.23° S: -90° E: 180° W: -180°
Temporal Coverage: 01 November 1978 – present
Parameters: Sea Ice Concentration

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Platform(s):

  • DMSP 5D-3/F17 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F17
  • DMSP 5D-2/F13 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F13
  • DMSP 5D-2/F11 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F11
  • DMSP 5D-2/F8 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F8
  • NIMBUS-7

Sensor(s):

  • SSMIS Special Sensor Microwave Imager/Sounder
  • SSM/I Special Sensor Microwave/Imager
  • SMMR Scanning Multichannel Microwave Radiometer

Data Resolution:

Spatial: 25 km
Temporal: Monthly

Data Format:

ASCII text, PNG, KML, KMZ, Geospatial Vector Data

More Information:

Metadata | Documentation | Product Web Site

Data Access:

FTP

Data Set Creator(s):

F. Fetterer, K. Knowles, W. Meier, M. Savoie

Multisensor Analyzed Sea Ice Extent - Northern Hemisphere (MASIE-NH)

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Sample Image Spatial Coverage: Northern: N: 90° S: 0° E: 180° W: -180°
Temporal Coverage: Previous Month
Parameters: Sea Ice Extent

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Platform(s):

  • ALOS Advanced Land Observing Satellite
  • AQUA Earth Observing System, AQUA
  • DMSP Defense Meteorological Satellite Program
  • ENVISAT Environmental Satellite
  • ERS-2 European Remote Sensing Satellite-2
  • GOES NOAA Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites
  • MSG Meteosat Second Generation
  • NOAA POES NOAA Polar Orbiting Environmental Satellites
  • RADARSAT-2
  • SATELLITES

Sensor(s):

  • AMSR-E Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer-EOS
  • AMSU-A Advanced Microwave Sounding Unit-A
  • AMSU-B ADVANCED MICROWAVE SOUNDING UNIT B (AMSU-B)
  • ASAR Advanced Synthetic Aperature Radar
  • AVHRR Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer
  • GOES I-M IMAGER
  • MODIS Moderate-Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer
  • PALSAR Phased Array type L-band Synthetic Aperture Radar
  • SAR Synthetic Aperture Radar
  • SEVIRI Spinning Enhanced Visible and Infrared Imager
  • SSM/I Special Sensor Microwave/Imager

Data Resolution:

Spatial: 4 km
Temporal: Previous 4 weeks, with daily resolution

Data Format:

ASCII text, PNG, KML, ESRI Shapefiles, NetCDF, Microsoft Excel

More Information:

Metadata | Documentation | Product Web Site

Data Access:

FTP

Data Set Creator(s):

F. Fetterer, M. Savoie, S. Helfrich, P. Clemente-Colón

Nimbus-7 SMMR Polar Gridded Radiances and Sea Ice Concentrations

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No Image Available Spatial Coverage: Northern: N: 90° S: 30° E: 180° W: -180°
  Southern: N: -39° S: -90° E: 180° W: -180°
Temporal Coverage: 25 October 1978 – 20 August 1987
Parameters: Brightness Temperatures, Sea Ice Concentration

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Platform(s):

  • NIMBUS-7
  • Radiometers

Sensor(s):

  • SMMR Scanning Multichannel Microwave Radiometer

Data Resolution:

Spatial: 25 km
Temporal: Every other day

Data Format:

Flat binary (1- and 2-byte integers)

More Information:

Metadata | Documentation

Data Access:

FTP

Data Set Creator(s):

P. Gloerson, D. Cavalieri, W. J. Campbell, J. Zwally

EASE-Grid Sea Ice Concentrations [top]

Near-Real-Time SSM/I EASE-Grid Daily Global Ice Concentration and Snow Extent (NISE)

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NISE  thumbnail image Spatial Coverage: Global: N: 90° S: -90° E: 180° W: -180°
Temporal Coverage: Approximately Previous Two Weeks
Parameters: Sea Ice Concentration, Snow Extent

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Platform(s):

  • DMSP 5D-3/F17 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F17
  • DMSP 5D-2/F13 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F13

Sensor(s):

  • SSMIS Special Sensor Microwave Imager/Sounder
  • SSM/I Special Sensor Microwave/Imager

Data Resolution:

Spatial: 25 km
Temporal: Daily

Data Format:

HDF-EOS

More Information:

Metadata | Documentation

Data Access:

FTP

Data Set Creator(s):

A. Nolin, R. L. Armstrong, J. Maslanik

Other Passive Microwave Sea Ice Products [top]

Polar Pathfinder Daily 25 km EASE-Grid Sea Ice Motion Vectors

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Sea Ice Vectors  thumbnail image Spatial Coverage: Northern: N: 90° S: 48.7278° E: 180° W: -180°
  Southern: N: -53.2028° S: -90° E: 180° W: -180°
Temporal Coverage: 25 October 1978 – 31 December 2012
Parameters: Sea Ice Motion

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Platform(s):

  • AQUA Earth Observing System, AQUA
  • BUOYS
  • DMSP 5D-3/F17 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F17
  • DMSP 5D-2/F13 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F13
  • DMSP 5D-2/F11 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F11
  • DMSP 5D-2/F8 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F8
  • MODELS
  • NIMBUS-7
  • NOAA-11 National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration-11
  • NOAA-12 National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration-12
  • NOAA-14 National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration-14
  • NOAA-9 National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration-9

Sensor(s):

  • AMSR-E Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer-EOS
  • AVHRR Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer
  • DRIFTING BUOYS
  • SSMIS Special Sensor Microwave Imager/Sounder
  • SSM/I Special Sensor Microwave/Imager
  • SMMR Scanning Multichannel Microwave Radiometer

Data Resolution:

Spatial: 25 km
Temporal: Daily, Weekly, Monthly, Yearly

Data Format:

ASCII, Binary (2-byte integers), PNG, EPS

More Information:

Metadata | Documentation

Data Access:

FTP

Data Set Creator(s):

C. Fowler, M. Tschudi

Snow Melt Onset Over Arctic Sea Ice from SMMR and SSM/I-SSMIS Brightness Temperatures

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Sample Image Spatial Coverage: Northern: N: 90° S: 30° E: 180° W: -180°
Temporal Coverage: 01 January 1979 – 31 December 2007
Parameters: Snow Melt Onset

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Platform(s):

  • DMSP 5D-2/F13 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F13
  • DMSP 5D-2/F11 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F11
  • DMSP 5D-2/F8 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F8
  • NIMBUS-7

Sensor(s):

  • SSMIS Special Sensor Microwave Imager/Sounder
  • SSM/I Special Sensor Microwave/Imager
  • SMMR Scanning Multichannel Microwave Radiometer

Data Resolution:

Spatial: 25 km
Temporal: Yearly

Data Format:

ASCII text, GIF

More Information:

Metadata | Documentation

Data Access:

FTP

Data Set Creator(s):

S. Drobot, M. Anderson

Northern Hemisphere EASE-Grid 2.0 Weekly Snow Cover and Sea Ice Extent, Version 4

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NSIDC-0046  thumbnail image Spatial Coverage: Northern: N: 90° S: 00° E: 180° W: -180°
Temporal Coverage: 03 October 1966 – 31 December 2010
Parameters: Snow Cover, Sea Ice Extent

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Platform(s):

  • DMSP 5D-2/F13 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F13
  • DMSP 5D-2/F11 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F11
  • DMSP 5D-2/F8 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F8
  • GOES NOAA Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites
  • GOES-7 Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite 7
  • NIMBUS-7
  • NOAA POES NOAA Polar Orbiting Environmental Satellites

Sensor(s):

  • AVHRR Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer
  • SMMR Scanning Multichannel Microwave Radiometer
  • SSM/I Special Sensor Microwave/Imager
  • VAS VISSR Atmospheric Sounder

Data Resolution:

Spatial: 25 km
Temporal: Weekly

Data Format:

Flat binary (1-byte integers)

More Information:

Metadata | Documentation

Data Access:

FTP | Browse

Data Set Creator(s):

R. L. Armstrong, M. J. Brodzik

Meltpond2000 Polarimetric Scanning Radiometer Sea Ice Brightness Temperatures

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NSIDC-0046  thumbnail image Spatial Coverage: Northern: N: 76.421° S: 68.966° E: -63.196° W: -105.021°
Temporal Coverage: 26 June 2000 – 06 July 2000
Parameters: Brightness Temperature, Ice Temperature

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Platform(s):

  • AIRCRAFT

Sensor(s):

  • INFRARED RADIOMETERS
  • RADIOMETERS

Data Resolution:

Spatial: Varies from 0.13 km to 3.6 km, depending on the sensor
Temporal: Data were collected during five 8-hour long flights

Data Format:

MATLAB files

More Information:

Metadata | Documentation

Data Access:

FTP

Data Set Creator(s):

M. Klein, A. J. Gasiewski, D. Cavalieri, T. Markus

Passive Microwave Sea Ice Trends [top]

Sea Ice Index

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Sample Image Spatial Coverage: Northern: N: 90° S: 30.98° E: 180° W: -180°
  Southern: N: -39.23° S: -90° E: 180° W: -180°
Temporal Coverage: 01 November 1978 – present
Parameters: Sea Ice Concentration

More Detail

Platform(s):

  • DMSP 5D-3/F17 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F17
  • DMSP 5D-2/F13 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F13
  • DMSP 5D-2/F11 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F11
  • DMSP 5D-2/F8 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F8
  • NIMBUS-7

Sensor(s):

  • SSMIS Special Sensor Microwave Imager/Sounder
  • SSM/I Special Sensor Microwave/Imager
  • SMMR Scanning Multichannel Microwave Radiometer

Data Resolution:

Spatial: 25 km
Temporal: Monthly

Data Format:

ASCII text, PNG, KML, KMZ, Geospatial Vector Data

More Information:

Metadata | Documentation | Product Web Site

Data Access:

FTP

Data Set Creator(s):

F. Fetterer, K. Knowles, W. Meier, M. Savoie

Sea Ice Trends and Climatologies from SMMR and SSM/I-SSMIS

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Sample Image Spatial Coverage: Northern: N: 90° S: 30.98° E: 180° W: -180°
  Southern: N: -39.23° S: -90° E: 180° W: -180°
Temporal Coverage: 26 October 1978 – Approximately Previous Year
Parameters: Sea Ice Extent, Area, and Persistance; Sea Ice Concentration Climatologies; Ocean Masks; Missing Pixels

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Platform(s):

  • DMSP 5D-3/F17 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F17
  • DMSP 5D-2/F15 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F15
  • DMSP 5D-2/F13 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F13
  • DMSP 5D-2/F11 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F11
  • DMSP 5D-2/F8 Defense Meteorological Satellite Program-F8
  • NIMBUS-7

Sensor(s):

  • SSMIS Special Sensor Microwave Imager/Sounder
  • SSM/I Special Sensor Microwave/Imager
  • SMMR Scanning Multichannel Microwave Radiometer

Data Resolution:

Spatial: Varies
Temporal: Varies

Data Format:

Flat binary, PNG, ASCII text, JPEG

More Information:

Metadata | Product Web Site

Data Access:

FTP

Data Set Creator(s):

W. Stroeve, W. Meier