NOAA Office of Satellite and Product Operations

Please Note:  

To view imagery from the operational GOES East (GOES-16) and GOES West (GOES-17) satellites, users may visit https://www.star.nesdis.noaa.gov/goes/.

Sea Surface Temperature (SST)

(SST is defined as the skin temperature of the ocean surface water.)


    Operational Products
SST Anomaly Charts This global 5km Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomaly product, displays the difference between today's SST and the long-term average. The scale goes from -5 to +5 °C. Positive numbers mean the temperature is warmer than average; negative means cooler than average.

The SST anomaly field (degrees C) is the difference between the 50 km nighttime-only SST and the nighttime-only monthly mean SST climatology. The climatology is based on nighttime observations from 1984-1993, with SST observations from the years 1991 and 1992 omitted due to aerosol contamination from the eruption Mt. Pinatubo in June of 1991.

Monthly Mean SST Anomaly Charts (1984-1998)

Sample SST Anomaly Chart


POES & GOES Resolution: 5 Km Frequency: Daily
SST Contour Charts Graphical depiction of Sea Surface Temperature gridded products. Contour charts are used to depict both global and regional SST values in various grid spacing.

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Sample SST Contour Chart


Polar-Geostationary Blended Resolution: 5 Km Frequency: Daily
SST Nighttime Field Image Charts The operational night-only SST analysis is at a resolution of 50 km and is used to produce the SST anomaly charts.

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Sample SST Night time 50 km Imagery


POES Resolution: 5 Km Frequency: Daily
SST Swaths The AVHRR-and-VIIRS CoastWatch SST products supply users with operational satellite data, processed using TeraScan software and CoastWatch utilities.

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Sample SST Swath


POES Resolution: 4 Km Frequency: Daily (Swath Data)
SST Monthly Mean A satellite-only monthly mean time series of SST at 36 km resolution has been provided by Al Strong (ORA/ORAD) based on only nighttime SST satellite observations. These datasets, based on NESDIS's AVHRR data, have been accumulated into weekly means (U of Miami - RSMAS) and provided to NASA-JPL for distribution. Some SST monthly means are omitted due to contamination by volcanic aerosols (1981-1983 and some of 1991-1992 due to the eruption of Mt. Pinatubo).

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Sample SST Nighttime Imagery


POES Resolution: 36 Km Frequency: Monthly
    Developmental Products
CoastWatch SST Color enhanced versions of Sea Surface Temperatures from GOES Imager. The GOES-11 and 12 imagers observe both northern and southern hemisphere every half an hour. These 5-band (0.6, 3.9, 6.7, 10.7, 12 or 13.3 micron) and 4-band (0.6, 3.9, 6.7, 10.7. or 13.3 micron) images are processed to retrieve SST retrievals at 4-km resolution. The infrared channels determine the SST, and all channels (except the 6.7 and 13.3 km) determine the cloud contamination. These retrievals are remapped, averaged and composited hourly and made available for users to access.

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Sample Sea Surface Temperature Image


GOES Resolution: 4 Km Frequency: 3 hour and 24 hour Averages