Data Set ID:

DMSP-F8 SSM/I Pathfinder Global Level 2 Sea Ice Concentrations, Version 1

These sea ice concentrations have been generated by applying the NASA Team algorithm to DMSP F8 SSM/I brightness temperature observations from 19 GHz (vertical and horizontal), 37- and 22 GHz vertical frequencies, calculating two gradients for use as weather filters. Global coverage is provided, but sea ice concentrations are only derived for ocean, ice, and possible ice surfaces poleward of 35 degrees latitude, from 01 August 1987 through 30 November 1988. In the Northern Hemisphere, where data are not filtered due to weather effects, first-year and multi-year concentrations (in percent) are calculated; total ice concentration is taken as the sum of these two. Only total ice is calculated for the Southern Hemisphere. All 25 km swath data are in HDF.

As of 26 September 2019, this data set is retired and no longer available for download. The data set is being retired because other passive microwave data sets with longer temporal records are available at NSIDC. Two possible alternatives are the Sea Ice Concentrations from Nimbus-7 SMMR and DMSP SSM/I-SSMIS Passive Microwave Data, Version 1 data set or the NOAA/NSIDC Climate Data Record of Passive Microwave Sea Ice Concentration, Version 3 data set.

Version Summary:

Initial release.

Data Format(s):
  • HDF
Spatial Coverage:
N: 88, 
N: -35, 
S: 35, 
S: -88, 
E: 180, 
E: 180, 
W: -180
W: -180
Platform(s):DMSP 5D-2/F8
Spatial Resolution:Not SpecifiedSensor(s):SSM/I
Temporal Coverage:
  • 1 August 1987 to 30 November 1988
Temporal ResolutionNot specifiedMetadata XML:View Metadata Record
Data Contributor(s):Michael Goodman

Geographic Coverage

No access options.

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.

Goodman, M. 2003. DMSP-F8 SSM/I Pathfinder Global Level 2 Sea Ice Concentrations, Version 1. [Indicate subset used]. Boulder, Colorado USA. NASA National Snow and Ice Data Center Distributed Active Archive Center. doi: [Date Accessed].

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No technical references available for this data set.

How To

V0 Programmatic Data Access Guide
Data from the NASA National Snow and Ice Data Center Distributed Active Archive Center (NSIDC DAAC) can be accessed directly from our HTTPS file system. We provide basic command line Wget and curl instructions for HTTPS file system downloads below. For questions about programmatic access to NSIDC... read more
How do I convert an HDF5/HDF-EOS5 file into binary format?
To convert HDF5 files into binary format you will need to use the h5dump utility, which is part of the HDF5 distribution available from the HDF Group. How you install HDF5 depends on your operating system. Full instructions for installing and using h5dump on Mac/Unix and... read more