McIDAS User's Guide
Version 2011.1

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Appendix D

Bands for Satellite Imagery

The bands for satellite data, which are sometimes called channels, are described in this appendix.

The band numbers in the Band columns in this appendix are numbers that are assigned to each central wavelength data output from a specific satellite instrument. We attempt to keep the same numbering scheme in McIDAS, but it is not always possible. Satellites having more than one instrument may have a separate assignment table for each instrument. The information in the other columns (Central Wavelength, Primary Uses, etc.) are from official publications and websites devoted to the satellites.

Resolution refers to the maximum resolution of the instrument, which is not always the same as the resolution of the stored data in the area. Definitions for the Terms and Acronyms are located at the back of this appendix.

Operational status and future launch dates are current as of this manual's Revised date. However, launch dates sometimes change so you should check websites of the launch agencies and groups (e.g., for up-to-date launch schedules. Another good resource is the WMO Space Programme's Satellite Status page,

Appendix directory

The following satellite data sources are described:

Satellite Data Source Orbit Type
GOES Variable Imager Geostationary
GOES Variable Sounder Geostationary
GOES AAA Geostationary
Meteosat Geostationary
Meteosat Second Generation Geostationary
GMS Geostationary
MTSAT Geostationary
FY-2 Geostationary
Kalpana Geostationary
POES Polar
Metop Polar
EOS Polar
FY-1 Polar


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