How to extract point and area data samples using AppEEARS

This step-by-step tutorial demonstrates how to access MODIS and SMAP data using the Application for Extracting and Exploring Analysis Ready Samples (AppEEARS). AppEEARS allows users to access, explore, and download point and area data with spatial, temporal, and parameter subsets. Interactive visualizations with summary statistics of the sample results allow the user to preview and interact with their sample before downloading the data. NSIDC DAAC data sets available in AppEEARS include:

Short name Long name
MYD10A1 MODIS/Aqua Snow Cover Daily L3 Global 500m SIN Grid
MOD10A1 MODIS/Terra Snow Cover Daily L3 Global 500m SIN Grid
MYD10A2 MODIS/Aqua Snow Cover 8-Day L3 Global 500m SIN Grid
MOD10A2 MODIS/Terra Snow Cover 8-Day L3 Global 500m SIN Grid
SPL3FTP SMAP L3 Radiometer Global and Northern Hemisphere Daily 36 km EASE-Grid Freeze/Thaw State
SPL3SMP SMAP L3 Radiometer Global Daily 36 km EASE-Grid Soil Moisture
SPL3SMP_E SMAP Enhanced L3 Radiometer Global Daily 9 km EASE-Grid Soil Moisture
SPL4CMDL SMAP L4 Global Daily 9 km EASE-Grid Carbon Net Ecosystem Exchange
SPL4SMGP SMAP L4 Global 3-hourly 9 km EASE-Grid Surface and Root Zone Soil Moisture Geophysical Data

Step 1: Access the AppEARS interface

Note that you will need to be logged into your Earthdata account to access the AppEEARS interface.

Step 2: Choose Point Sample

Under Extract, choose Point Sample. Area samples can also be chosen but the steps and options are slightly different than what are outlined in this article.

Step 3: Start a new request

Choose Start a new request and fill in the data submission details

  1. Name your project
  2. Start Date and End Date (click the Is Data Recurring box and adjust the Year Range to receive data from one time period but spanning multiple years
  3. Select data layers (this tutorial uses NDSI_Snow_Cover from MODIS and Soil_Moisture_Retreival_PM_soil_moisture_pm from SMAP)
  4. Add or upload latitude and longitude coordinates (or copy/paste the following)
  • Aspen, 39.1911, -106.8175
  • Boulder, 40.0150, -105.2705
  • Denver, 39.7392, -104.9903
  • Durango, 37.2753, -107.8801
  • Grand Junction, 39.0639, -108.5506
  • Fort Collins, 40.5853, -105.0844
  • La Junta, 37.9850, -103.5438
  • Steamboat Springs, 40.4850, -106.8317


Step 4: Explore results

In the Explore tab, choose View the contents of the request and explore the visuals and graphs of your data submission


Step 6: Download data

In the Explore tab, choose Download Point Sample to download project statistics and native data related to the project


For questions related to NSIDC DAAC data please contact For AppEEARS related questions, contact