Study finds inaccurate satellite temperature measurements

By on November 24, 2014

NASA satellite mosaic of Earth (Credit: NASA)

A study published in the journal Climate Dynamics casts doubt on the accuracy of satellite temperature measurements, according to The Guardian. Its authors note that while land-based thermometers have charted an uptick, satellite temperature readings have remained relatively flat in the last few decades.

So the question now is which set of temperature data is correct. According to the paper’s authors, satellite measurements are wrong by as much as 30 percent.

One possible cause of the discrepancy is how satellites get temperature data. Typically, they measure radiant emissions from oxygen in the atmosphere and then translate those into temperature specs. The emissions can be influenced by water in clouds.

Top image: Satellite mosaic of Earth. (Credit: NASA)

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