Given these instrument differences between MODIS EOS and VIIRS S-NPP/JPSS, a merged MODIS-VIIRS cloud record to serve the science community in the coming decades requires different algorithm approaches than those used for MODIS alone. This new approach includes two parallel efforts: (1) Imager-only algorithms with only spectral channels common to VIIRS and MODIS (i.e., eliminate use of MODIS CO2 and NIR/IR water vapor channels). Since the algorithms are run with similar spectral observations, they provide a basis for establishing a continuous cloud data record across the two imagers. (2) Merged imager and sounder measurements (i.e.., MODIS-AIRS, VIIRS-CrIS) in lieu of higher-spatial resolution MODIS absorption channels absent on VIIRS. The MODIS-VIIRS continuity algorithm for cloud optical property retrievals leverages heritage algorithms that produce the existing MODIS cloud mask (MOD35), optical and microphysical properties product (MOD06), and the NOAA AWG Cloud Height Algorithm (ACHA).
We discuss our progress towards merging the MODIS observational record with VIIRS in order to generate cloud optical property climate data record continuity across the observing systems. In addition, we summarize efforts to reconcile apparent radiometric biases between analogous imager channels, a critical consideration for obtaining inter-sensor climate data record continuity.