BackForwardInstrument:  ERBE 

Instrument details
Acronym ERBE
Full name Earth Radiation Budget Experiment
Purpose Measurement of reflected and emitted terrestrial radiation
Short description 8-channel radiometer, 5 channels non-scanning, 3 scanning. Of the non-scanning, one is for solar irradiance (0.2-50 μm), two for earth radiation in SW (0.2-5.0 μm) over wide-FOV and medium-FOV respectively, two for total earth radiation (0.2-50 μm) over wide-FOV and medium-FOV respectively. The three scanning channels cover the ranges 0.2-5.0 μm, 0.2-50 μm and 5.0-50 μm respectively
Background Simplified from the ERB peviously flown on Nimbus-6 and Nimbus-7. Implementing the Earth Radiation Budget Experiment in cooperation with NOAA-9 and NOAA-10
Scanning Technique Solar irradiance channel: sun pointing. Non-scanning earth-viewing channels (4): wide-FOV 2000 km, medium-FOV 110 km. Scanning earth-viewing channels (3): cross-track, swath 2000 km
Resolution Scanning channels: 40 km s.s.p.
Coverage / Cycle Near-global, twice/day (long-wave) or once/day (short-wave). High latitudes excluded due to the 57° orbital inclination
Mass Power Data Rate 1.12 kbps


Providing Agency NASA
Instrument Maturity Flown on an R&D satellite
Utilization Period: 1985 to 2005
Last update: 2014-09-24
Detailed characteristics
Satellites this instrument is flying on

Note: a red tag indicates satellites no longer operational, a green tag indicates operational satellites, a blue tag indicates future satellites

Instrument classification
  • Earth observation instrument
  • Passive optical radiometer or spectrometer
  • Broadband Earth radiation radiometer
WIGOS Subcomponents
  • Subcomponent 1
  • Absolutely calibrated broadband radiometers, and TSI and SSI radiometers
  • Broadband radiometer (for ERB)
Mission objectives
Primary mission objectives
  • Downward short-wave irradiance at TOA
  • Upward long-wave irradiance at TOA
  • Upward short-wave irradiance at TOA
Evaluation of Measurements

The following list indicates which measurements can typically be retrieved from this category of instrument. To see a full Gap Analysis by Variable, click on the respective variable.

Note: table can be sorted by clicking on the column headers
Note: * Primary mission objective.
VariableRelevance for measuring this variableOperational limitationsExplanation
Downward short-wave irradiance at TOA*2 - very highNo specific limitation.TSI over the range from UV to FIR
Upward short-wave irradiance at TOA*1 - primaryNo specific limitation.SW, LW and Total (SW+LW) broadband channels with cross-track and bi-axial scanning for BRDF necessary for irradiance computation
Upward long-wave irradiance at TOA*1 - primaryNo specific limitation.SW, LW and Total (SW+LW) broadband channels