ICARE news

This section highlights new products, tools or services available at ICARE.
The "Products" section features new satellite products processed by ICARE, along with new data sets or new versions collected from other data providers.
The "Tools" features new web interfaces or new functionalities in existing interfaces.
The "Events" section features upcoming events related to ICARE activities.
The "Satellite news" section features news related to a satellite mission.




Satellite news


CALIPSO Lidar Level-1 V4.00 Product Retirement

Date: November 2017
The CALIPSO mission announces that as of 11 October 2017 the Version 4.00 Lidar Level-1 product will no longer be publicly available from the Atmospheric Science Data Center (ASDC) at NASA Langley Research Center nor from the French AERIS/ICARE Data and Services Center in Lille, France. This dataset, which spans from June 13, 2006 to May 31, 2015, was replaced by the recently released Version 4.10 Lidar Level-1 data. CALIPSO users are strongly encouraged to use this newer version of the Lidar Level-1 dataset, which is now available on all currently existing standard order tools as well as the CALIPSO Search/Sub-setter application.
Click here for CALIPSO Data and Information.
Click here for access to CALIPSO products from the AERIS/ICARE on-line archive.

Release of CALIPSO V4-10 Level-1 and Level-2 Lidar products

Date: March 2017. Update of previous highlight posted in November 2016.

The CALIPSO mission announces the release of new versions of its standard Level-1 and Level-2 lidar data products. These products are available through the Atmospheric Science Data Center (ASDC) at NASA Langley Research Center and the French AERIS/ICARE Data and Services Center in Lille, France. The new data products consist of the Version 4.10 Lidar Level-1 Products and Version 4.10 Lidar Level-2 Products. The V4.10 CALIOP Level 2 data products are the first major revision to the Level 2 product suite since May 2010. The extensive improvements made in this new release correct numerous artifacts and significantly enhance the content and quality of the science data. In addition to the substantial updates made to all existing Level 2 products, V4.10 introduces a new merged layer product that reports the spatial and optical properties of cloud and aerosol layers in a single file.
Users are instructed not to use Version 4.00 Lidar Level 1 product any longer and to use instead the Version 4.10 for science use. The product is available beginning with data from June 13, 2006 (following CALIOP first light), and as of this update, through July 31, 2016. Remaining data will be available as it is produced. The product is now available on all currently existing standard order tools as well as the CALIPSO Search/Sub-setter application.
Version 4.00 Lidar Level 1 will be deleted from the AERIS/ICARE archive in a couple of months.
To see the full announcement of November 2016, click here.

Click here for more information about the CALIPSO products at ASDC.
Click here for access to CALIPSO products from the AERIS/ICARE on-line archive.
Click here for in-depth overview for the products.

Release of PARASOL-MODIS unique synergy products

    Date: 2016/04
    Besides improvements brought to the standard POLDER/PARASOL Level-2 science codes (see below), a new science code has been developed, tested and validated. This code, named PM-L2, is based on the synergy between POLDER/PARASOL and MODIS/Aqua observations. Products are generated and distributed since April 2016. The output data sets are in the same grid as PARASOL standard products, at native 1/18 deg. spatial resolution for the cloud parameters and at 1/6 deg. resolution for the aerosol parameters. The algorithm makes synergetic use of the well-known specific capabilities of each sensor in the retrieval scheme, i.e. polarization for PARASOL, and large-range spectral measurements for MODIS, thus alleviating individual methodological limitations. This concept was underused thus far.
    The new data sets enable thorough analyses of cloud properties derived from each sensor individually (cloud cover, optical depth, thermodynamic phase). More importantly, they enable new parameters to emerge or to be derived with a higher level of confidence: cloud thermodynamic phase and aerosol optical thickness above cloud layers.
    Coincident colocated observations from other sensors of the A-Train constellation were also used (CALIPSO/CALIOP and CloudSat) to validate the cloud oxygen pressures and geometrical extent.
    The new aerosol and cloud parameters from PM-L2 are:
    • Cloud classification (upcoming documentation)
    • Cloud thermodynamic phase
    • Cloud top pressure (upcoming documentation)
    • Cloud geometrical thickness (upcoming documentation)
    • Aerosol optical thickness above cloud layers

    All PARASOL data sets now available in HDF format

    Date: 2016/03 - Update: 2016/09 for v1.01
    All PARASOL data products, starting from Level-1, are now available in HDF format (see online archive):
    L1_B-HDF: v1.01 - Top of the atmosphere radiances - Level-1
    OC2-HDF: v1.01 - Daily aerosol product over ocean - Level-2
    LS2-HDF: v1.01 - Daily aerosol product over land - Level-2
    RB2-HDF: v1.01 - Daily cloud, water vapor, and radiative budget - Level-2
    OC3-HDF: v1.01 - Monthly aerosol product over ocean - Level-3
    AC3-HDF: v1.01 - Monthly aerosol product over land - Level-3
    RB3-HDF: v1.01 - Monthly cloud, water vapor, and radiative budget - Level-3

    Full reprocessing of PARASOL data archive with new data sets available

    Date: 2015/09 - Update: 2016/09
    After the end of the PARASOL mission, CNES and ICARE completed a full-mission reprocessing in 2014. CNES carried out the final Level-1 PARASOL reprocessing using an improved algorithm incorporating all final in-flight radiometric calibration parameters (CNES document PARASOL_L1_final_reprocessing.pdf ). ICARE proceeded with the reprocessing of the PARASOL Level-2 and Level-3 products using revised science codes as well as new codes provided by the scientists.
    As a result, in addition to improved standard products, new, innovative atmospheric products also become available.
    The new aerosol and cloud parameters from the revised science codes are:
    • Uncertainty of AOT (Level-2 aerosol over ocean) (upcoming description)
    • Aerosol altitude (Level-2 aerosol over land) (upcoming description)
    • CLOud VErtical Structure (CLOVES) parameters : Cloud top and middle oxygen pressure, multilayer flag,
    • and cloud geometrical extent (Level-2 Earth radiation budget, water vapor and clouds)
    For aerosol retrievals over ocean, code revisions include:
    • improvement of aerosols non-spherical models
    • improvement of cloud mask
    • implementation of see-ice mask
    • update of ancillary data
    for aerosol retrievals over land:
    • implementation of higher resolution land biome map
    and for cloud and radiative budget products:
    • update of the solar irradiance.
    Scientists completed the quality control. Invalid orbits of some Level-2 products (OC2, LS2, RB2) were removed, a few minor fixes were incorporated in a new version of RB2 (v21.22), and all derived Level-3 products (OC3, AC3, RB3) were generated. The public release occurred in September 2016. Here is a summary of the latest version numbers (see also the ICARE online catalogue):
    L1_B: v03.02 - Top of the atmosphere radiances - Level-1
    OC2: v11.11 - Daily aerosol product over ocean - Level-2
    LS2: v10.11- Daily aerosol product over land - Level-2
    RB2: v21.22 - Daily cloud, water vapor, and radiative budget
    PM-L2: v3.00 - Daily aerosol and cloud product from combined PARASOL-MODIS observations - Level-2
    PR_ATM: v.12.07.2 - Daily and monthly global gridded atmosphere products - Level-3
    OC3: v11.11 - Monthly Aerosol Product over Ocean - Level 3
    AC3: v10.11 - Monthly Aerosol Product over Land - Level 3
    RB3: v08.06 - Monthly Cloud & Radiative Budget Products - Level 3
    A table with the version history and collection information of the PARASOL products will be provided in 2016.

    Public release of Megha-Tropiques/SAPHIR Relative Humidity profiles products

    Date: 2015/07
    The French Megha-Tropiques science team is pleased to announce the public release of the layer-averaged relative humidity profiles (L2-RH) derived from the SAPHIR instrument. This new Level-2 product is available from the start of the mission (October 2011) until present. (click here to access the data from the ICARE archive interface (current version: v1.00).
    The SAPHIR relative humidity profiles are produced for 6 altitude layers: 100-200hPa, 250-350hPa, 400-600hPa, 650-700hPa, 750-800hPa and 850-950hPa. The retrieval scheme named ARPIA ("Atmospheric Relative humidity profile Including the Analysis of confidence intervals") provides an estimate of the mean RH as well as its standard deviation interpreted as the 1-sigma confidence interval. ARPIA considers cloud-free and cloudy conditions, oceanic and continental scenes. Known limitations are for icy layers on top of convective clouds and for precipitating conditions, which are filtered out using the Hong et al. (2005) threshold method adapted for SAPHIR channels.
    The details of the method will be soon available in a peer-reviewed paper.
    Click here to access L2-RH products from the ICARE on-line archive.
    Click here for more information on the L2-RH products on the Megha-Tropiques Science web site.

    PARASOL Level-1 and Level-2-and-up Data Reprocessing Completion

    Date: 2015/06/08
    After 9 years in orbit, the PARASOL mission has gone well beyond the 2-year lifespan expected at the beginning of the mission. PARASOL flew nearly 5 years in formation with other instruments of the A-Train constellation of satellites, providing coincident observations (available at ICARE as well). The good quality of the measurements and innovative inversion methods lead to various global climatologies and unique atmospheric products.
    Following the end of the mission, the reprocessing of PARASOL Level-1 data and all atmosphere products using revised algorithms was carried out from April to November 2014. This is the first step of a large-scale reprocessing of all POLDER/PARASOL data. Indeed, the reprocessing of POLDER-1 and POLDER-2 will be carried out later in 2015 to get a consistent POLDER/PARASOL archive with new calibration information. Ultimately, it will improve their usefulness in climate studies.
    The new PARASOL data records (L1_B.v03.02, OC2.v11.11, LS2.v10.11) will replace the previous versions as soon as the current validation process is over (in mid-2015). The records will span the entire duration of the scientific mission, i.e. from March 12, 2005 to October 11, 2013 (8 years and 7 months).
    All ICARE PARASOL web pages are currently being revised to include the latest information on the PARASOL mission, data products and data access.

    Release of SEVIRI AERUS-GEO aerosol product

    Date: 2015/01
    A new SEVIRI aerosol product has been developed in the framework of a joint collaboration between Meteo France (CNRM-GAME) and ICARE. The new daily (daytime) aerosol optical depth product (SEV_AERUS-AEROSOL-NRT-D3) is public (current version: v1.01, year 2014 until present)). The AERUS-GEO (Aerosol and surface albEdo Retrieval Using a directional Splitting method-application to GEOstationary data) product is derived from observations from the Meteosat Second Generation (MSG) geostationary satellite covering Europe, Africa, and part of Asia and South America. The retrieval method exploits the directional information contained in the series of 96 MSG observations per day of the Earth’s disk to derive a daily mean AOD and an Angström exponent. Detailed description of the algorithm and evaluation studies are available in Carrer et al. 2010 (JGR) and Carrer el al., 2014 (see Publications). A reprocessing of the whole SEVIRI archive (2004-present) will be available soon.
    Click here to access the ICARE geostationary browse interface.
    Click here to access the AERUS-GEO data from the ICARE archive interface.

    Release of CALIOP V4 Level-1 Product

    Date: 2014/11
    The Atmospheric Science Data Center (ASDC) at NASA Langley Research Center in collaboration with the CALIPSO mission team announces the release of the following standard data product: CAL_LID_L1-Standard-V4-00
    This updated version of the CALIOP Level-1 data product substantially improves both the 532nm and 1064nm calibration accuracies. Changes to the calibration techniques were firmly rooted by a thoroughly documented and peer-reviewed approach. The version 3.x (3.01, 3.02 and 3.30) CALIOP Level-1 data product will continue to be generated and made publically available, with version 4.0 running in parallel. Unlike version 3.x, which is released continuously following 2-3 day latency from downlink, new releases of the version 4.0 product will be made periodically in discrete blocks.
    The product is available beginning with data from June 13, 2006 (following CALIOP first light), and as of this announcement, through December 31, 2013. Remaining data will be available as it is produced.
    Click here for more information about the CALIPSO products at ASDC.
    Click here to access CALIPSO products from the ICARE on-line archive.

    SEV06-CLD MODIS-like SEVIRI cloud product

    Date: 2014/10/01
    A beta version of a new SEVIRI cloud product has been released for evaluation purposes and is available through ICARE web site. Registered ICARE users can request access permission to the data sets to contact@icare.univ-lille1.fr. Other interested users can register at https://web-backend.icare.univ-lille.fr/register, specifying "access to MODIS-like beta SEVIRI cloud products" in the description field of the registration form. Users are invited to provide feedback and comments on product quality.
    For detailed information on the product, data access and availability, and data use restrictions, please visit the SEV06-CLD pages: https://web-backend.icare.univ-lille.fr/sev06-cld.

    Megha-Tropiques SAPHIR (UTH) and ScaRaB (Radiances, Flux and Albedo) products

    Date: 2013/10/01
    ICARE processes SAPHIR and ScaRaB Level-2 products from the beginning of the mission in late 2011 to present. Three products are available: SAPHIR L2-UTH, ScaRaB L2-FLUX and ScaRaB L2B-FLUX.
    These products are available through the Web Catalogue , the Web Archive Interface and the FTP server under SAPHIR and ScaRaB. The segment-wise SAPHIR and ScaRaB Level-1 products are also available.
    ICARE documentation: https://web-backend.icare.univ-lille.fr/mt

    Envisat/MERIS Aerosol over ocean: ALAMO

    Date: 2012/07/01
    ICARE routinely generates aerosol products over ocean using a code developed by HYGEOS. A level-2 and a level-3 (Daily) Aerosol Optical Depth and Angstrom Exponent over Ocean are generated at the native spatial resolution ("Reduced Resolution" 1 km) and is available over the sensor lifespan (2002-2012). This product can be accessed through the Web Catalogue, the Web Archive Interface and the FTP server under MERIS/MER_ALAMO and MERIS/MER_ALAMO_D3

    MSG/SEVIRI Aerosol over land SMAOL

    Date: 2012/06/01
    ICARE routinely generates aerosol products over land (aerosol optical depth at 630 nm and Angstrom Exponent) using a code developed by HYGEOS. The product is generated at the native SEVIRI spatial and temporal resolution (3 km at nadir and 15 min) and is currently available 8 days after data acquisition.
    This product can be accessed through the Web Catalogue, the Web Archive Interface and the FTP server under SEVIRI/SMAOL_AOT
    Period: 2009 and January 2012-present

    Ground-based observations

    Since 2012, ICARE activities related to ground-based and in-situ observations have steadily increased. ICARE works with numerous French laboratories and observatories on French projects: ORAURE (aerosol, cloud), ROSEA (water vapor and precipitation), IAOOS (arctic aerosol), CaPPA (aerosol) and with a consortium of 28 European partners on the European projects ACTRIS (aerosol, cloud). ICARE currently collects, processes, archives and distributes atmospheric data for these projects. Several developments are in progress to facilitate the use of these data independently and in synergy with satellite data.
    Specific ORAURE and ROSEA web sites provide details:
    http://rosea.univ-lille1.fr (in French)

    Daily global gridded products

    ICARE generates several satellite products in HDF format on a regular grid to facilitate data inter-comparison. Two resolutions, a coarse (0.5 degree) and a fine (0.1 or 0.05 degree) are provided for:
    • PARASOL aerosol over ocean, over land, and global (resolution: 2880x1440 and 720x360; period: 20050304-20131010)
    • Aqua/MODIS aerosol (resolution: 0.1 and 0.5 deg; period: 2005-present) and cloud (resolution: 0.05 and 0.5 deg; period: 2005-present),
    • OMI aerosol in the UV and cloud fraction and amount (resolution: 0.125 and 0.5 deg; period: 2007-present),
    • MERIS aerosol over ocean (HYGEOS/ALAMO product: resolution: 0.1 and 0.5 deg; period: 2002-20120408

    These gridded products can be accessed through the Web Archive Interface and the FTP server under MERIS/MER_ALAMO and MER_ALAMO-D3 and CMG (for PARASOL, MODIS, OMI, https://web-backend.icare.univ-lille.fr/archive/?dir=CMG/


    Megha-Tropiques browse interface

    ICARE developed a web interface to visualize Megha-Tropiques browse imagery associated with SAPHIR and ScaRaB "Orbit" L1A2 products. Browse images are created at native resolution for the whole data archive.

    Data extract tool

    The interface is designed to extract ground-based observations (from AERONET or EARLINET) coincident with satellite data. Users can select one or several satellite products, a time period and adjust the intersection radius. All satellite observations within the specified radius around each site and time period will be extracted.

    Overpass predictor

    ICARE developed a user-friendly web interface to help users identify overpass time over a user-defined time-period and visualize satellite subtracks over a given geographic location.

    Product average tool

    ICARE developed a web interface to average aerosol, cloud, precipitation products over a user-defined time-period and a region of interest. The time range can vary from one day to multi-year, and monthly, seasonal and inter-seasonal (DJF-MAM-JJA-SON) periods are also supported.


    Journée Thématique du PNTS "Observation et modélisation de structures 3D des enveloppes superficielles" 16 mars 2017, CNES, Paris

    Le Programme National de Télédétection Spatiale organise le 16 mars 2017 une journée thématique consacrée à "Observation et modélisation de structures 3D des enveloppes superficielles" dans le but de favoriser les échanges entre chercheurs sur cette thématique pluridisciplinaire prometteuse. Cette journée thématique du PNTS se déroulera le 16 mars 2017 à Paris de 9h00 à 17h30. Le programme de la journée et les informations pratiques sont disponibles à l'adresse suivante: http://www-loa.univ-lille1.fr/workshops/workshopPNTS2017. La participation à cette journée est libre et gratuite, mais l'accès au CNES nécessite une déclaration préalable des participants. Vous êtes donc invité(e) à vous inscrire en remplissant avant le 27 Février 2017 (délai de rigueur) le formulaire en ligne qui est mis à disposition sur le site internet du workshop.

    2nd workshop on "Radiative transfer in the atmosphere for spatial observations" – Presentations (in French) now available

    23-25 March, 2015, Polytech’Lille, University of Lille 1
    The CNES and the University of Lille 1 are organizing the second workshop on Radiative transfer codes in the atmosphere. It will be held at the University of Lille 1, 23-25 March, 2015. The aim of the workshop is to provide an overview of the radiative codes used by the French science community, to foster exchanges between research scientists from multiple disciplines and to discuss perspectives for the coming years regarding spatial remote sensing. Registration to the workshop is free but seating is limited.
    Links to oral presentations and posters (PDF format) can be found in the detailed program ("Programme" section).

    First announcement: International Conference on the “Water and Energy cycles in the Tropics”

    17-19 November 2015, Paris, France
    The aim of the conference is to provide a forum to review and discuss the latest research on the topic of the water and energy cycles with emphasis on tropical regions.
    The conference is organized by CNES, CNRS with the sponsorship of GEWEX and will be held from 17 to 19 November 2015 in the Institut d'Océanographie, in the heart of Paris, France.

    Satellite news

    Megha-Tropiques on-board issue from 8 November 2018 to 21 March 2019

    Date: 2019/06/04
    Following an interruption of data production at the end of 2018, investigations on this issue ran from mid December 2018 to end February 2019. The issue is located in the satellite data handling sub system. Actually, the memory is sensitive to temperature, which causes corruptions in data and, therefore, prevents any operational production in the ground system. The solution elaborated by the ISRO (in charge of the satellite), to decrease the memory temperature down to an operational point, is to switch off equipment for 2 orbits and switch on for more than one orbit (140mn). This pattern is repeated every 3 orbits. Currently, the situation is stable. As shown in the 2 graphs in the document, the data completeness (blue curve) is around 30% and the overall quality is comparable to the situation before the anomaly.
    NB: the period is not the same for SCARAB and SAPHIR because SCARAB was OFF at the beginning of the year.

    Missing Megha-Tropiques Level-1 data since 19 December 2018

    Because of some technical issues, Megha-Tropiques Level-1 data are unavailable since 2018-12-19. ISRO is investigating the problem, but for the moment, there is no date for a resumption of data dissemination.

    Missing Megha-Tropiques Level-1 data from 15 November to 7 December 2018

    Because of some technical issues encountered to process the satellite data stream, Megha-Tropiques Level-1 data are unavailable from 2018-11-15 to 2018-12-07. It is very unlikely that these data will be recovered.

    CALIPSO mission suspended from 28 January to 14 March 2016

    The CALIPSO mission was interrupted on 28 January, 2016 because of a GPS receiver issue. The payload went back to a nominal data acquisition state on 14 March 2016. Expedited data processing and standard processing resumed on that day along with data distribution at ICARE and NASA/LaRC. Unfortunately, data loss between 28 January and 14 March 2016 is unrecoverable.
    More information on the incident can be found on the CNES-CALIPSO website:
    in French: https://calipso.cnes.fr/fr/mission-calipso-suspendue-du-28-janvier-au-14-mars-2016
    in English : https://calipso.cnes.fr/en/calipso-mission-suspended-28-january-14-march-2016