dataset : Great Lakes CoastWatch Node

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory


Great Lakes CoastWatch Node

CoastWatch is a nationwide National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) program within which the Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory (GLERL) functions as the Great Lakes regional node. In this capacity, GLERL obtains, develops, and delivers environmental data and products for near real-time observation of the Great Lakes to support environmental science, decision making, and supporting research since 1990. This is achieved by providing Internet access to near real-time and retrospective satellite observations, derived products, modeled, and in-situ Great Lakes data. The goals and objectives of the CoastWatch Great Lakes Program directly support NOAA's statutory responsibilities in estuarine and marine science living marine resource protection, and ecosystem monitoring and management. The CoastWatch node at the NOAA/Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory (GLERL) is receiving a product suite of enhanced digital images including satellite-derived surface water temperature (SST), visible and near-infrared reflectance, brightness temperatures, cloud masks, satellite/solar zenith angle data and graphics from the NOAA/AVHRR (Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer), MetOp A and B, and NPP VIIRS (National Polar-orbiting Partnership (Suomi) Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite) series of satellites in HDF format. These near real-time CoastWatch data are acquired by GLERL from NOAA's National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service (NESDIS) on a daily schedule via Internet. The daytime and nighttime raster images are 1024 x 1024 in size having a nominal resolution of 1.3 km. The VIIRS “high resolution” data has a nominal resolution of 0.8 km and raster size of 1631 x 1631). The near real-time satellite data and derived products (as well as the 512 x 512, 2.6 km resolution data received prior to 2004 in CWF format) are available from the CoastWatch Great Lakes website ( The data is also available from the NOAA CoastWatch Comprehensive Large Array-data Stewardship System (CLASS), an electronic library of NOAA environmental data. The AVHRR/MetOp SST data are cloud-masked and land-masked and used to create the GLSEA (Great Lakes Surface Environmental Analysis), a daily, cloud-free composite SST image with NIC ice concentration overlay during winter months (.png, .ascii, KML formats), cloud-masked and land-masked SST images in Geotif format, and 512 x 512 subsets by lake in .png format. In addition, GOES (Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites) visible, near infrared, water vapor, and SST images of the Great Lakes are received from NESDIS and MODIS true color 250m resolution imagery of each Great Lake (and synoptic scene) (received near real-time from the Space Science and Engineering Center at the University of Wisconsin), in-situ and modeled data, including marine and meteorological observations, buoy observations, water level gauge measurements from NOAA's National Ocean Service, are routinely acquired or produced, stored, and made available to Great Lakes CoastWatch data users. Great Lakes Forecasting system (nowcast and forecast) products are also available to CoastWatch data users via the Great Lakes CoastWatch website (

The spatial range for this dataset is 38.0° to 52.0° latitude, and -93.0° to -75.0° longitude. map (center)

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