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warn_icon.gif IMPORTANT MESSAGE Apr 04, 2014    TRMM Level 3 Products for February 2014   

Due to the recent hardware issue, we noticed that all TRMM Level 3 products for February 2014 were missing.  We will be processing and replacing these products shortly.  If you have a standing order/s for any of these, then you will receive another data notification for these products after they are archived.

 The products being replaced include:






& Browse.

 If you had already obtained this data, then you do not need to take any further action, since the data being replaced is identical.  We apologize for any confusion that this may cause.

 Please let us know if you have any concerns or questions.   Thank you

for your patience and understanding.



warn_icon.gif IMPORTANT MESSAGE Mar 28, 2014    VIRS to stay off   

From PPS: At a meeting of the FOT and power engineers, the battery anomaly was discussed.  Because of the load shedding made possible by turning off VIRS, battery 1 is fully recovered.  Both battery 1 and battery 2 are charging nominally.  Battery 2 is running at a higher temperature than before. There was still some concern expressed that if VIRS was turned on, then during certain orbits and certain beta angles, the charging anomaly might reoccur.

 Discussion followed concerning the effect of potentially having to turn VIRS on and off (as a load shedding approach during certain times) on remaining battery life.  With a 16 plus year old battery, this now may become the limiting factor on a longer TRMM mission.

 Since the prime science goal is to keep the 2 prime instruments (TMI and PR) working as long as possible,  the key goal seems to be to lessen the load on the battery.  So we need to minimize the possibilities of further anomalies, lower the battery charging load, and generally decrease demand on the batteries.  As a result, the science team made the decision at this time to keep VIRS turned off.

 We would be interested in hearing from users what the impact this has on you and your research.  Also, we would welcome TRMM science user's input as to the effect of this VIRS outage on their work vs. the desirability of extending operation of TMI and PR.

 We do want our users to know there is no absolute analytical way to determine the remaining life in the batteries.  Also, there is no analytical way to establish how much additional life would be added by the battery load reduction but there was general consensus among the experts that it would increase the life of the battery.

The Flight Operations Team and power specialists will continue to monitor the battery.

The power team is also going to look at life cycle testing done during TRMM development to see what, if anything that might add to the understanding of the on-board battery remaining capacity.

 Accordingly, the TRMM science team has made the decision that for the time being, the VIRS instrument will remain off.


 IMPORTANT MESSAGE Mar 26, 2014    Update on VIRS and battery anomaly

From PPS: The battery situation aboard TRMM has stablized with the loadshedding.

Currently both batteries are in a nominal state. The FOT is studying other possible ongoing load shedding activities short of turning off an instrument. They are also studying the proper procedures for turning on VIRS (this hasn't been done since 2001).

 The current plans call for VIRS to be turned on sometime next week. The batteries will then be monitored to see if charging remains nominal. Should charging anonmalies appear again, it will be necessary to shutdown VIRS again.


IMPORTANT MESSAGE Mar 24, 2014    Important: VIRS has been turned off for the time being

From PPS: Due to a battery charging anomaly on TRMM, VIRS has been turned off (3/21

17:02 UTC)  as part of a load shedding approach for dealing with the

charging anomaly.


This approach seems to be working well as battery charging is returning to



TMI, PR and LIS remain on and continue to provide NRT data.


Note will be sent out when the situation changes.

The Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) is a joint mission between NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) designed to monitor and study tropical rainfall.

Instruments onboard the TRMM satellite

Basic Information

Launch Date
November 27, 1997
Circular, non-sun-synchronous, with an inclination of 35 degrees to the Equator.
Orbit Altitude

350 km (1997/11/27 - 2001/08/08)

403 km (2001/08/24 - present)

Altitude Change
During the period of 2001/8/7 to 2001/8/14, the average operating altitude changed from 350 km to 403 km (referred to also as TRMM Boost).


Below are overview descriptions of the instruments on the TRMM satellite:

Visible Infrared Radiometer (VIRS)
The VIRS (of NOAA AVHRR heritage) is a five-channel, cross-track scanning radiometer operating at 0.63, 1.6, 3.75, 10.8, and 12 um, which provides high resolution observations on cloud coverage, cloud type, and cloud top temperatures.
TRMM Microwave Imager (TMI)
The TMI (of DMSP SSM/I heritage) is a multichannel passive microwave radiometer operating at five frequencies: 10.65, 19.35, 37.0, and 85.5 GHz at dual polarization and 22.235 GHz at single polarization. The TMI provides information on the integrated column precipitation content, cloud liquid water, cloud ice, rain intensity, and rainfall types (e.g., stratiform or convective).
Precipitation Radar (PR)
The PR, the first of its kind in space, is an electronically scanning radar, operating at 13.8 GHz that measures the 3-D rainfall distribution over both land and ocean, and define the layer depth of the precipitation.

Further information on these instruments may be found on the TRMM Instruments Web page.

Latest News

NLDAS-2 VIC hourly 0-100 cm soil moisture content of 00Z January 1, 2014. Note the low soil moisture in the Southwest, Pacific Northwest, and California, consistent with reported drought conditions.
Apr 11, 2014 - NLDAS Phase 2 VIC Model Data Sets Released by NASA GES DISC

New data release complements previously released Mosaic and NOAH hydrological model data

+ Read More…
TRMM rain rate quasi-climatology for the state of New York in August.  Variations in rainfall and sunlight in the summer are important for viniculture in the Finger Lakes region of New York.
Apr 11, 2014 - The March 2014 issue of The Giovanni News is online

Aerosols and evapo-transpiration, climate change investigations, and quasi-climatologies this month

+ Read More…
GES DISC - USGS collaboration makes NLDAS and GLDAS hydrological data more compatible with Geographical Information System (GIS) analyses.
Mar 28, 2014 - GES DISC – USGS collaboration for hydrological assimilation model data

The Geo Data Portal offers a region-specific analysis capability

+ Read More…
The American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing was founded in 1934. "Photogrammetry" is generally defined as the science of making measurements from photographs.
Mar 21, 2014 - NASA GES DISC Presentations at ASPRS 2014

Data preservation efforts and rainfall estimation for agriculture described

+ Read More…
Excel spreadsheet and data plot of monthly NLDAS 0-100cm soil moisture content for Texas, 1979-2013.
Mar 13, 2014 - NLDAS and GLDAS data sets accessible through the USGS GDP

NASA-USGS collaboration allows new visualization options for hydrologic data

+ Read More…

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Last updated: May 27, 2010 04:35 PM ET