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Question:

What are U.S. Landsat Analysis Ready Data (ARD)?

Answer:

U.S. Landsat Analysis Ready Data (ARD) are products that make the Landsat archive more accessible, easier to analyze, and reduce the amount of time users spend on data processing for time series analysis. U.S. Landsat ARD are derived from Landsat Collection 1 Level-1 precision and terrain-corrected scenes which are further processed and arranged in geospatially-calibrated tiles and dense temporal stacks for immediate use for monitoring and assessing landscape change.

The following Landsat Collection 1 Level-1 products are used as input to U.S. Landsat ARD:

  • Landsat 8 Operational Land Imager (OLI)/Thermal Infrared Sensor (TIRS), 2013-present  (Tier 1, Tier 2)
  • Landsat 7 Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus (ETM+), 1999-present (Tier 1)
  • Landsat 4-5 Thematic Mapper (TM), 1982-present (Tier 1)

Landsat 1-5 Multispectral Sensor (MSS) data will be made available as U.S. ARD once the MSS Level-1 data are processed into the Landsat Collection inventory structure.

U.S. Landsat ARD are currently available for the conterminous United States (CONUS), Alaska and Hawaii. Global Landsat ARD specifications are being developed and will be announced when finalized.

Each U.S. Landsat ARD tile consists of the following products:

  • Top of atmosphere (TA) reflectance
  • Top of atmosphere brightness temperature (BT)
  • Surface reflectance (SR)
  • Pixel quality assessment (QA)

Data product information and processing details, packaging specifications, and documentation can be found on the U.S. Landsat ARD webpage.