Surface Temperature and Precipitation

Although temperature and precipitation data are routinely collected using satellite-based instruments, data sets created using meteorological station data are still often preferred for ecological modeling. In some cases data sets derived from station data are improved by integrating data collected from satellite-based instruments.

Satellite-based rainfall estimates are made using passive microwave, radar, and optical instruments. Rainfall-estimate data sets derived from satellite remote sensing are often too coarse (>4 km) for many ecological modeling tasks.

There are many satellite-based instruments that can measure surface temperature including some that produce a global daily and 8-day composite data set available with a 1 km resolution. Finer resolution data can be acquired using satellite sensors. However, they do not have as frequent repeat cycles as those producing 1 km products.

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