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A new NASA/MSFC mission analysis global cloud cover data baseA global cloud cover data set, derived from the USAF 3D NEPH Analysis, was developed for use in climate studies and for Earth viewing applications. This data set contains a single parameter - total sky cover - separated in time by 3 or 6 hr intervals and in space by approximately 50 n.mi. Cloud cover amount is recorded for each grid point (of a square grid) by a single alphanumeric character representing each 5 percent increment of sky cover. The data are arranged in both quarterly and monthly formats. The data base currently provides daily, 3-hr observed total sky cover for the Northern Hemisphere from 1972 through 1977 less 1976. For the Southern Hemisphere, there are data at 6-hr intervals for 1976 through 1978 and at 3-hr intervals for 1979 and 1980. More years of data are being added. To validate the data base, the percent frequency of or = 0.3 and or = 0.8 cloud cover was compared with ground observed cloud amounts at several locations with generally good agreement. Mean or other desired cloud amounts can be calculated for any time period and any size area from a single grid point to a hemisphere. The data base is especially useful in evaluating the consequence of cloud cover on Earth viewing space missions. The temporal and spatial frequency of the data allow simulations that closely approximate any projected viewing mission. No adjustments are required to account for cloud continuity.
Document ID
Document Type
Technical Publication (TP)
Brown, S. C. (NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Huntsville, AL, United States)
Jeffries, W. R., III (Computer Sciences Corp. Huntsville, Ala., United States)
Date Acquired
September 5, 2013
Publication Date
March 1, 1985
Subject Category
Report/Patent Number
NAS 1.60:2448
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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NameType 19850013568.pdf STI