Z. Q. Gao; W. Gao;N. B. Chang


Authors: contact us about adding a copy of your work at

Abbreviated Journal Title

J. Appl. Remote Sens.


UVB changes; UVI; USDA Ground-based Measurements; Nimbus-7/TOMS; spatiotemporal analysis; SURFACE UV-RADIATION; LONG-TERM VARIATIONS; SATELLITE RETRIEVALS; NORTHERN; IRRADIANCE; AEROSOLS; CANADA; BREWER; CLOUDS; IMPACT; Environmental Sciences; Remote Sensing; Imaging Science & Photographic; Technology


In recent years, the risk of health effects caused by the increased exposure to Ultraviolet-B (UVB) due to stratospheric ozone depletion has received wide attention. In the US, there are two ways to accurately measure the UVB. They include: 1) the National Aeronautical and Space Administration (NASA) Nimbus-7 total ozone mapping spectrometer (TOMS), and 2) the United State Department of Agriculture (USDA) ground-based network. This paper compares these two sensors' data for the ultraviolet index (UVI) nationally and regionally to support possible public health, agricultural, and ecological analyses in the future. The major findings of our study are: 1) although there are discrepancies between these two data sets, the temporal correlation coefficients can be as high as 98%. 2) Both types of data sources depict the macroscopic spatial pattern of the UVI across the continental US. indicating a strong spatial correlation; 3) The two data sources are generally consistent though the UVI of the NASA TOMS data are often about 0.13-1.05 units larger than those of the USDA ground-based measurements; and 4) Varying differences can be seen between the Midwest and two coastal regions. While the level of the UVI on the west coast has shown a decreasing trend in the past few years, its counterpart on the east coast showed an opposite trend in between 2000 and 2005. It is hard to conclude that the changes are due to variations of total ozone concentrations in this study period. The USDA ground-based measurements may be better applied for time series analysis for public health, ecological, and agricultural applications due to their ability to provide intensive calibrated point measurements.

Journal Title

Journal of Applied Remote Sensing



Publication Date


Document Type




First Page


WOS Identifier