Data Product Information

The data processing center will produce nine Level 1B and Level 2B Standard Data Products:

1B-CPRLevel 1B Received echo powers
2B-GEOPROFCloud mask and radar reflectivities
2B-CLDCLASSCloud Classification
2B-CWC-RORadar-only liquid/ice water content
2B-TAUCloud optical depth
2B-CWC-RVODRadar + visible optical depth liquid/ice water content
2B-FLXHRRadiative fluxes and heating rates
2B-GEOPROF-LidarCloudSat CPR + CALIPSO Lidar Cloud mask

Use the following resources to learn about and obtain CloudSat data:

1 Download the CloudSat Data Products Handbook. It has general information on the CloudSat mission and the individual data products.*
2Follow the Product Documentation link for more detailed online and hardcopy information about each product version.
3Check the Data Issues page to see if there are any known issues or problems with product version you are interested in.
4Review the Configuration Control page to see what the most recent versions are or to find out about data you have.
5View the Release Status page to see if data have been processed for your days of interest.
6Search for and order data from the Data Ordering System.
*(If the PDF file doesn't load, try right clicking the link and "Save Target As..." or "Save Link As...".)

File Naming Convention

YYYYDDDHHMMSS = Year, Julian day, hour, minute, second of the first data contained in the file (UTC)
NNNNN = Granule number
CS = Literal "CS" indicating the CloudSat mission
2B-TAU = Product name
GRANULE = Indicates the data subset ("GRANULE" if the data are not subset)
S = Data Set identifier ("P" for production release)
RVV = Release number
EVV = Epoch number
.hdf = HDF-EOS file suffix


CloudSat data products are made available in HDF-EOS format and are created with HDF-EOS 2.5 based on HDF 4.1r2. Later versions of the HDF and HDF-EOS libraries should be able to manipulate the files as long as they are in the HDF 4 series. Files delivered through the online ordering system are compressed (.zip).

Note: Publications or presentations that use CloudSat data must acknowledge the NASA CloudSat project. Please also inform the project of any such publications by submitting the full reference at Submit a Publication Reference.

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