Access to data via FTP for this data set will no longer be available after January 31, 2017. The NASA NSIDC DAAC is transitioning to data distribution through HTTPS, which requires users to login with an Earthdata Login username and password. Data will continue to be available free of charge.

Get Data


To learn more about Earthdata Login and register for an account, please see How to Register with Earthdata Login. Once you have logged in, data can be downloaded via a Web browser, command line, or client. For help with downloading data, please see Options Available for Bulk Downloading Data from HTTPS with Earthdata Login.



Data can be downloaded through a Web browser or command line via FTP. When using a Web browser, the FTP link first directs you to an Optional Registration Form that if filled out, will allow you to receive notifications about updates or processing changes related to that specific data set. After completing the Optional Registration Form, the FTP directory becomes available. For additional help downloading data through an FTP client, go to the How to access data using an FTP client support page.


Data Set ID:

GEOSAT Radar Altimeter DEM Atlas of Antarctica North of 72.1 degrees South, Version 1

The Antarctic atlas consists of 28 digital elevation maps which cover
all of Antarctica north of 72.1 degrees south at a resolution of
three kilometers. Each map contains surface elevations and
coordinates for one atlas page covering 16 degrees of longitude. Data
were acquired by the Geodetic Satellite (GEOSAT) Geodetic Mission
(GM) from March 1985 through September 1986 and are available in both
Universal Transverse Mercator (UTM) coordinates, and in latitude and longitude coordinates.

Data were mapped using the UTM projection in atlas form to decrease
the distortion that usually occurs at the poles. Many features of the
Antarctic Ice Sheet are shown in more detail than in previous digital elevation models, especially along the margin of the East Antarctic
Ice Sheet. A geostatistical mapping technique (Herzfeld et al. 1993)
improved the accuracy of surface elevations compared to previous
GEOSAT elevation data sets. This atlas will facilitate the monitoring
of changes in surface elevation that could indicate mass changes in
the Antarctic Ice Sheet.

Geographic Coverage

Spatial Coverage:
  • N: -65, S: -72, E: 180, W: -180

Spatial Resolution: Not Specified
Temporal Coverage:
  • 1 April 1985 to 30 September 1986
Temporal Resolution: Not specified
  • Topography > Contours
  • Glaciers/Ice Sheets > Glacier Elevation/Ice Sheet Elevation
  • Glaciers/Ice Sheets > Glaciers
  • Glaciers/Ice Sheets > Glacier Topography/Ice Sheet Topography
  • Glaciers/Ice Sheets > Ice Sheets
  • Topography > Landforms
  • Topography > Surface Roughness
  • Topography > Terrain Elevation
Platform(s) GEOSAT
Data Format(s):
  • ASCII Text
Version: V1
Data Contributor(s): Ute Herzfeld

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.

Ute Christina Herzfeld, Michael S. Matassa 1999. GEOSAT Radar Altimeter DEM Atlas of Antarctica North of 72.1 degrees South, Version 1. [Indicate subset used]. Boulder, Colorado USA. NSIDC: National Snow and Ice Data Center. doi: [Date Accessed].
No technical references available for this data set.
No FAQs or How Tos available for this data set.

Access complete Knowledge Base

Questions? Please contact:
NSIDC User Services
Phone: 1 303 492-6199