NOAA Office of Satellite and Product Operations

Ocean Color

Ocean Color is the water hue due to the presence of tiny plants containing the pigment chlorophyll, sediments, and colored dissolved organic material.


    Operational Products
Chlorophyll Concentration Chlorophyll concentration provides an estimate of the live phytoplankton biomass in the surface layer. It is also referred to as the amount of the green pigment chlorophyll. The chlorophyll anomaly is generated when today's chlorophyll concentration data is compared to the bi-monthly mean. A positive anomaly indicates new algal growth. Bi-monthly mean values are averages calculated over 61 days.

Product Links:
MODIS/Aqua NIR-SWIR - Daily Mean  |  Bimonthly Mean  |  Anomaly
MODIS/Aqua NASA L2gen NIR - Daily Mean  |  Bimonthly Mean  |  Anomaly
MODIS/Aqua Chesapeake Bay - Daily Mean  |  Monthly Mean

Sample Chlorophyll Concentration Anomaly Image


MODIS/Aqua Resolution: 1 Km Frequency: Daily
Ocean Color
(Remote Sensing Reflectance)
Remote sensing reflectances (Rrs 665, 667 or 670 nm) provide a proxy for the suspended sediments in surface waters. The Rrs anomaly is generated when today's data is compared to the bi-monthly mean. Bi-monthly mean values are averages calculated over 61 days.

Product Links:
MODIS/Aqua NIR-SWIR - Daily Mean  |  Bimonthly Mean  |  Anomaly
MODIS/Aqua NASA L2gen NIR - Daily Mean  |  Bimonthly Mean  |  Anomaly
MODIS/Aqua Chesapeake Bay - Daily Mean  |  Bimonthly Mean

Sample MODIS Ocean Color Image


MODIS/Aqua Resolution: 1 Km Frequency: Daily
Ocean Color
(Water Attenuation Coefficient)
Water attenuation coefficient (Kd490) defines the presence of light (downwelling irradiance) versus depth, the depth of euphotic zone, and ultimately the maximum depth of primary production.

Product Links:
MODIS/Aqua NIR-SWIR - Daily Mean

Sample MODIS Ocean Color Image


MODIS/Aqua Resolution: 1 Km Frequency: Daily
MODIS/Aqua Chlorophyl Front Chlorophyll fronts are biogeographical/ecosystem boundaries associated with zones of elevated primary and secondary productivity and fisheries.

Product Links:
Magnitude  |  Direction

Sample MODIS Chlorophyl Front Image


MODIS/Aqua Resolution: 1 Km Frequency: Daily
    Developmental Products
MODIS/Aqua Ehux Bloom Global Ehux products illustrate the presence/absence, areal extent, and timing of blooms of the sentinel coccolithophorid species Emilliania huxleyi (a calcite producing single-celled algae) and the resulting calcite concentration.

Product Links:
Composite Ehux Bloom Map - 8-Day
Composite Calcite Concentratrion - Daily Mean  |  8-Day

Sample MODIS Ehux Bloom Image


MODIS/Aqua Resolution: 1 Km or 4 Km Frequency: Daily or 8-Day
    Backup Products
Chlorophyll Concentration Chlorophyll concentration provides an estimate of the live phytoplankton biomass in the surface layer. It is also referred to as the amount of the green pigment chlorophyll. The chlorophyll anomaly is generated when today's chlorophyll concentration data is compared to the bi-monthly mean. A positive anomaly indicates new algal growth. Bi-monthly mean values are averages calculated over 61 days.

Product Links:
MODIS/Terra NASA L2gen NIR - Daily Mean  |  Bimonthly Mean  |  Anomaly

Sample Chlorophyll Concentration Anomaly Image


MODIS/Terra Resolution: 1 Km Frequency: Daily
Ocean Color
(Remote Sensing Reflectance)
Remote sensing reflectances (Rrs 665, 667 or 670 nm) provide a proxy for the suspended sediments in surface waters. The Rrs anomaly is generated when today's data is compared to the bi-monthly mean. Bi-monthly mean values are averages calculated over 61 days.

Product Links:
MODIS/Terra NASA L2gen NIR - Daily Mean  |  Bimonthly Mean  |  Anomaly

Sample MODIS Ocean Color Image


MODIS/Terra Resolution: 1 Km Frequency: Daily

For a description of the file naming conventions, see: ftp://cw-okeanos.noaa.gov/pub/data1/README_file_names.txt