CryoSat's primary payload is the SAR Interferometric Radar Altimeter (SIRAL), a sophisticated altimeter designed to measure ice sheet elevation and sea ice freeboard.
The CryoSat mission science requirements demand SIRAL to measure variations in the thickness of perennial sea ice and land ice to the limit allowed by natural variability, and on spatial scales varying over three orders of magnitude. The natural variability of sea ice and land ice depends on fluctuations in the supply of mass by the atmosphere and ocean and snow and ice density.
CryoSat data is freely and openly available to everyone. Access is provided to all CryoSat systematic data acquired according to the current geographical mode mask.
The following CryoSat products are available:
Products generated by the CryoSat Ice Processor:
- Near Real Time * (SAR, SARIn) – L1B and L2
- Offline Products (LRM, SAR, SARIn) – L1B and L2
- Offline Global Data Record (GDR) Products
- Offline FBR Products (SAR and SARIN)
*FDM production discontinued 01/02/2021
Products generated by the CryoSat Ocean Processor:
- Near-Real Time Ocean Products (NOP) – L1B, L2
- Intermediate Ocean Products (IOP) – L1B, L2 & Pole-to-pole (P2P)
- Geophysical Ocean Products (GOP) – L1B, L2, P2P
Products generated by CryoTEMPO EOLIS (Elevation Over Land Ice from Swath):
- CryoTEMPO EOLIS Point Products - Contain a dense set of elevation measurements for individual observations. Due to the high volume of data, the data has been split into tiles of 100 x 100 km in size.
- CryoTEMPO EOLIS Gridded Products - Contain monthly 2 km resolution DEM with the data sourced from a rolling three month window
Read the CryoSat data description for more information.
Read more about the CryoSat products in these documents:
- CryoSat Baseline-D Ice Product Handbook
- CryoSat Baseline-C Ocean Product Handbook
- CryoTEMPO EOLIS Product Handbook
- CryoSat Ice netCDF Level 1B Product Format Specification
- CryoSat Ice netCDF Level 2 Product Format Specification
- CryoSat Ice Earth Explorer Level 1B Product Format Specification
- CryoSat Ice Earth Explorer Level 2 Product Format Specification
- CryoSat Ocean Product Format Specification
Find information on all periods of planned and unplanned unavailability of CryoSat SIRAL data.
Read more about SIRAL's Instrument Processing Facilities.
A number of tools are available for visualising, processing and analysing CryoSat data.
VtCryoSat is a tool designed to simplify browsing and downloading CryoSat products through an interactive, graphical web interface.
CryoSat User Tool
The CryoSat User Tool (CUT) is a Windows stand-alone application for displaying and downloading CryoSat products from remote FTP servers or from local directories.
CryoSat Software Routines
CryoSat ingestion routines are functions provided in the C programming language and IDL for reading CryoSat Level 1, and Level 2 Earth Explorer Format (EEF) products.
CryoSat Matlab routines
Matlab routines are provided for reading the CryoSat Level 1, Level 2 and Level 2I Earth Explorer Format (EEF) products. products.
During the course of the CryoSat mission, a number of special datasets have been released in addition to the primary products:
- CryoSat Roll Campaigns - Download SARIN data acquired during CryoSat's roll campaigns, which are conducted periodically to calibrate the interferometric baseline of the altimeter
- CryoSat STR mispointing angles dataset - Download Star Tracker mispointing angles corrected for the aberration of light. This dataset is particularly important for anyone processing data in Swath Mode
- CryoSat Baseline C data samples - Download examples of the CryoSat Ocean and Ice products processed in Baseline C. These data samples are intended to help familiarise everyone with the format of the new CryoSat products and are not fully representative of the quality that will be provided when this data is released to the user community.
- CryoSat Antarctic Digital Elevation Model
The goal of performing CryoSat Calibration and Validation (Cal/Val) activities is to quantify the mission’s system response (calibration), to verify the performance by comparison with independent sources of data (validation), and in doing so assess and quantify uncertainties in the measurements.
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