This product shows the mean snow cover duration (SCDmean), which is updated each year and consists of the arithmetic mean for the entire time series since the hydrological year 2001. The hydrological year begins in the meteorological autumn (October 1 of the previous year in the northern hemisphere or March 1 of the reference year in the southern hemisphere) and ends with the meteorological summer (northern hemisphere: August 31 of the reference year; southern hemisphere: February 28/29 of the following year). Analogous to the annual products for snow cover duration, the entire year as well as the early season (until mid-winter) and the late season (from mid-winter) are taken into account here.
The “Global SnowPack” is derived from daily, operational MODIS snow cover product for each day since February 2000. Data gaps due to polar night and cloud cover are filled in several processing steps, which provides a unique global data set characterized by its high accuracy, spatial resolution of 500 meters and continuous future expansion. It consists of the two main elements daily snow cover extent (SCE) and seasonal snow cover duration (SCD; full and for early and late season). Both parameters have been designated by the WMO as essential climate variables, the accurate determination of which is important in order to be able to record the effects of climate change. Changes in the largest part of the cryosphere in terms of area have drastic effects on people and the environment.
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