Articles | Volume 17, issue 24
Research article
20 Dec 2017
Research article |  | 20 Dec 2017

How long do satellites need to overlap? Evaluation of climate data stability from overlapping satellite records

Elizabeth C. Weatherhead, Jerald Harder, Eduardo A. Araujo-Pradere, Greg Bodeker, Jason M. English, Lawrence E. Flynn, Stacey M. Frith, Jeffrey K. Lazo, Peter Pilewskie, Mark Weber, and Thomas N. Woods


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Short summary
Satellite overlap is often carried out as a check on the stability of the data collected. We looked at how length of overlap influences how much information can be derived from the overlap period. Several results surprised us: the confidence we could have in the matchup of two records was independent of the offset, and understanding of the relative drift between the two satellite data sets improved significantly with 2–3 years of overlap. Sudden jumps could easily be confused with drift.
Final-revised paper