Why Switch To Version 6 Data?

The AIRS Project, in conjunction with the AIRS Science Team and NASA GES DISC, have made Version 6 Level 2 data available to the public. These data represent a significant improvement over AIRS Version 5 Level 2 products in terms of greater stability, yield, and quality. Several algorithmic improvements have been made by the AIRS Project and the AIRS Science Team. 

A complete list of noteworthy changes from Version 5 to Version 6 is provided in the document AIRS/AMSU/HSB Version 6 Changes from Version 5The following are the most visible to the user:

Improved Quality Indicators and Error Estimates

In the AIRS version 6 release, all retrieved quantities have quality indicators. Please read the Level 2 Quality Control and Error Estimation documentation for a description of these indicators and how they are set. The version 6 yields are increased and the error estimate improved.

Improved Outgoing Longwave Radiation

The OLR calculation has been updated and products are now provided at AIRS spot resolution as well as AMSU FOV esolution. A new spectral OLR reported in 16 bands is provided in the Level 2 Support Product.

New Thermodynamic/Ice Cloud Products

Four primary new cloud products are provided in the Level 2 Support Product: cloud thermodynamic phase, ice cloud optical thickness, ice cloud effective diameter, and effective ice cloud top temperature.

New Boundary Layer Height Product

The pressure at the top of the planetary boundary layer and associated quality control are reported in the Level 2 Support Product at the resolution of the AMSU field of view. The vertical positioning of thermodynamic profile gradients are used to locate the top of the planetary boundary layer. 

More about Version 6

More information about Version 6, including production plans, can be found on the NASA Goddard Earth Sciences Data and Information Services Center web site.