Articles | Volume 9, issue 8
Research article
01 Aug 2016
Research article |  | 01 Aug 2016

The Moon as a photometric calibration standard for microwave sensors

Martin Burgdorf, Stefan A. Buehler, Theresa Lang, Simon Michel, and Imke Hans

Data sets

JPL’s HORIZONS system JPL Solar System Dynamics

NOAA Level 1b data sets NOAA CLASS http://www.


Short summary
The upper-tropospheric humidity is an essential climate variable, which can be measured with microwave sounders in polar orbits. A stable photometric calibration of these instruments is indispensable for detecting long-term trends. We demonstrate that this can be achieved by using the Moon in a fixed phase as a flux standard for dedicated pitch maneuver observations. This method is particularly suited for future sensors with small beamwidths.