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Inter-comparison of various global sea surface temperature products

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In this study, eight global sea surface temperature (SST) products for 2009 are compared to clarify their characteristics. The median of eight daily values, the Ensemble Median as Reference Product (EMRP), is used as a reference product for inter-comparison. The results show that the absolute value of mean differences and the value of root mean square (RMS) differences are higher in single-microwave products such as Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer for the Earth observing system (AMSR-E), Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission Microwave Imager (TMI), and WindSat, than in products such as MicroWave Optimally Interpolated SST (MWOI), Merged satellite and in situ data Global Daily SST (MGD), and Operational Sea Surface Temperature and Sea Ice Analysis (OSTIA) constructed by merging several SST data. It is of note that the characteristics of SST products depend on the type of SST used within the product, rather than the data source used. A comparison of SST products was also conducted using EMRP and data observed by moored buoys. The results show that only AMSR-E has a warm bias (+0.06°C) while other products have a cool bias (maximum value −0.10°C). The RMS error of TMI is the highest (0.57°C), and that of EMRP the lowest (0.28°C). Furthermore, the temporal variability between the data in each SST product was compared to those observed by the Kuroshio Extension Observatory (KEO) buoy. Results show that the temporal variability of EMRP corresponds well to that of buoy data, and that the RMS error of EMRP is lower than that of the other SST products.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: School of Marine Science and Technology, Tokai University, Shizuoka, 424-8610, Japan 2: Hydrospheric Atmospheric Research Centre, Nagoya University, Nagoya, 464-8601, Japan

Publication date: July 18, 2014

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