2014-05-13: Evaluation of broadband surface solar irradiance derived from the Ozone Monitoring Instrument

Surface solar irradiance (SSI) data are important for planning and estimating the production of solar power plants. Long-term high quality surface solar radiation data are needed for monitoring climate change. This paper presents a new surface solar irradiance data set, the broadband (0.24 ?m) surface solar irradiance product derived from the Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI).
The OMI SSI algorithm is based on the Heliosat method and uses the OMI O2O2 cloud product as main input. The OMI SSI data are validated against the globally distributed Baseline Surface Radiation Network (BSRN) measurements at 19 stations for the year 2008. Furthermore, the monthly mean OMI SSI data are compared to independent surface solar irradiance products from International Satellite Cloud Climatology Project Flux Data (ISCCP-FD) and Clouds and the Earth's Radiant Energy System (CERES) data for the year 2005.

The mean difference between OMI SSI and BSRN global (direct+ diffuse) irradiances is -1.2Wm2 (-0.2%), the root mean square error is 100.1Wm2 (18.1%), and the mean absolute error is 67.8Wm2 (12.2%). The differences between OMI SSI and BSRN global irradiances are smaller over continental and coastal sites and larger over deserts and islands. OMI SSI has a good agreement with the CERES shortwave (SW)model B surface downward flux (SDF) product. The correlation coefficient and index of agreement between monthly mean 1-degree gridded OMI SSI and CERES SW SDF are N0.99. OMI SSI is lower than CERES SW SDF which is partly due to the solar zenith angle. On average, OMI SSI is 13.5 W m2 (2.5%) lower than the ISCCPFD SW surface downward flux and the correlation coefficient and index of agreement are N0.98 for every month.

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Scatter density plots of OMI SSI versus CERES shortwave surface downward fluxes (SW SDF) for (a) January and (b) July 2005. The OMI SSI and CERES SW SDF data are monthly mean global data at 1 1 grid. The dashed line is the one-to-one line. The colour scale indicates the base-10 logarithm of the number of data points.