Daily North American Snow Cover

View the Full-Sized Map

Imagery of the MODIS snow-cover fraction (SCF),  from the MODIS standard data product http://modis-snow-ice.gsfc.nasa.gov/  made by Land Atmosphere Near real time Capability for EOS (LANCE) is displayed above to provide a view of North America snow cover in near-real time (NRT).  The snow map is updated through the day as the MODIS orbit progresses westward.   If you click on an area of interest it will be enlarged if the image was acquired within seven days.

LANCE (http://lance.nasa.gov) provides access to NRT data products from the MODIS (Terra and Aqua), other EOS instruments and VIIRS in less than three hours from the observation time.

Moderate-resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) standard snow-cover products and NASA Visible Infrared Imager Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) snow-cover products are fully-automated snow-covered area (SCA) maps that provide sub-daily coverage of the Earth’s land areas. Both MODIS and VIIRS sea ice products are also available for parts of the Earth’s oceans that are subject to ice cover. Both the MODIS and VIIRS sea ice products provide ice-surface temperature (IST), and the VIIRS sea ice product also provides sea ice concentration.

VIIRS Figures

Figure 1. VNP10_L2.A2016024.1810, 1810 UTC, 24 January 2016. NDSI_Snow_Cover map. Snow cover extent, shown in shades of blue to white, across the Mid-Atlantic and Southeastern USA after a winter storm on 22-23 January 2016 (See Riggs et al., 2016, VIIRS Snow Products User Guide).

Project Description

The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) is a 36-channel visible to thermal-infrared sensor that was first launched as part of the Earth Observing System (EOS) Terra payload on 18 December 1999. A second MODIS was launched as part of the payload on the Aqua satellite on 4 May, 2002.

A suite of snow and ice products is produced from the MODIS instruments, and the products are available at different spatial and temporal resolutions as shown in the table to the right. The MODIS snow product suite begins with a 500-m resolution, 2330-km swath snow-cover map which is then gridded to a sinusoidal grid. The sequence proceeds to climate-modeling grid (CMG) products on a latitude/longitude (cylindrical equidistant projection). The products are archived at the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) in Boulder, CO.