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Note: A free version of McIDAS-V (the successor to McIDAS-X [SSEC's flagship visualization and data analysis software package]) is also available. SSEC recommends that you use McIDAS-V rather than McIDAS-Lite because McIDAS-V is a much more powerful package with many more features and capabilities than McIDAS-Lite.

McIDAS-Lite is a free image viewer that provides a simple tool for working with image files that are in McIDAS area or MODIS HDF format.  It can be used with data on the user's computer or remote data from public data sources.  A list of publicly accessible data sources is updated each time McIDAS-Lite is started, assuring the user easy access to free data.  McIDAS-Lite is available for a variety of platforms (see below) in a simple binary installation package.  McIDAS-Lite was produced at the Space Science and Engineering Center at the University of Wisconsin.


 Below: McIDAS-Lite displaying a color-enhanced
 full disk Meteosat-5 water vapor image.
 (click to enlarge)

click to enlarge

Capabilities of McIDAS-Lite:

  • View McIDAS area and MODIS HDF format image files
  • Work with local or remote data
  • Display images with your choice of geographic center point and magnification factors
  • Place maps onto displayed images
  • Manipulate image/graphics colors
  • Loop through multiple images
  • Perform basic quantitative analyses
  • Save displayed images and graphics in other formats (GIF, JPEG, BMP, PS, PPM, or CPS) or save raw image files in netCDF format or as ASCII/Binary flat files


Downloading and Installing McIDAS-Lite:

Installation simply involves downloading two files and then running the installation script. For specific installation instructions see the README file.

Installation Instructions:

README  all platforms

Installation Script:

 all platforms (shift + left-click to save)

Compressed File (choose one):

  McLITE-aix-1.5.tar.gz  AIX 5L version 5.2
  McLITE-darwin86-1.5.5.tar.gz  Mac OS X 10.4+ Intel
  McLITE-darwin-1.5.4.tar.gz  Mac OS X 10.3+ PPC
  McLITE-hpux-1.5.tar.gz  HP-UX 11.11
  McLITE-interix-1.5.tar.gz  Windows XP Professional plus SFU 3.5
  McLITE-irix-1.5.tar.gz  IRIX 6.5.21 (32-bit)
  McLITE-linux-1.5.5.tar.gz  RedHat Linux
  McLITE-solaris-1.5.tar.gz  Solaris 9
  McLITE-soli86-1.5.tar.gz  Solaris Intel 9

Questions about McIDAS-Lite?

Please refer to the Frequently Asked Questions web page.

For other questions about McIDAS-Lite, you may send email to McIDAS-Lite Support.

McIDAS-Lite is designed for ease of use, its capabilities have been limited in the interest of simplicity. McIDAS-X is a full functionality software package capable of extensive quantitative analyses and image manipulation. For information on the purchase of McIDAS-X please send email to McIDAS Information.