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Product Maturity Levels


MISR product maturity levels

NOTE: This page is designed for scientists who use MISR data. It includes terminology that is not defined here or elsewhere on this web site.

As explained in the product development description, MISR data products begin in an Alpha state, and advance through a series of maturity levels, from Alpha to Beta to Provisional to Validated status, i.e. from a developmental status to a scientifically proven status. Here are the designations of these respective maturity levels. Although these definitions are basically similar to those used by other Terra instruments, they are tailored specifically for MISR because of the individual instrument characteristics. An important aspect of these designations is that MISR data products contain multiple parameters that may be in different states of maturity. Products will be tagged with designations indicating the minimum and maximum maturity levels of parameters contained within the product. Click here to see the product maturity status and history.

Alpha data product

  • Prerelease designation used as a test bed to discover and correct errors affecting the operability of the associated production software at the DAAC.
  • Applies to entire products. Data products are visible to the science team, but not the public.
  • Not appropriate for scientific publication.

Beta data product

  • Early release used to gain familiarity with data formats.
  • Intended as a test bed to discover and correct errors.
  • Minimally validated and still may contain significant errors
  • General research community is encouraged to participate in the QA and validation, but need to be aware that product validation and QA are ongoing.
  • Parameter may be used in publications as long as beta quality is indicated by the authors. Drawing quantitative scientific conclusions is discouraged. Users are urged to contact science team representatives prior to use of the data in publications, and to recommend members of the instrument teams as reviewers
  • The Data Quality Summary states estimated uncertainties.
  • May be replaced in the archive when an upgraded product becomes available, but should be reproducible upon demand.

Provisional data product

  • Incremental improvements are still occurring. Obvious artifacts or blunders observed in beta product have been identified and either minimized or documented.
  • General research community is encouraged to participate in the QA and validation, but need to be aware that product validation and QA are ongoing.
  • Parameter may be used in publications as long as provisional quality is indicated by the authors. Users are urged to contact science team representatives prior to use of the data in publications, and to recommend members of the instrument teams as reviewers.
  • The Data Quality Summary states estimated uncertainties.
  • May be replaced in the archive when an upgraded product becomes available, but should be reproducible upon demand.

Validated data product

  • Validation results have been published in the peer-reviewed literature.
  • The Data Quality Summary states estimated uncertainties.
  • The Data Quality Summaries are updated as new validation results become available, including all referenceable publications.
  • Parameter, together with its published uncertainties, may be used to derive quantitative scientific conclusions that are suitable for publication.
  • May be replaced in the archive when an upgraded product becomes available, but should be reproducible upon demand.

Validated status occurs in three stages. (These have been adopted from the MODIS instrument)

  • Stage 1 Validated: Product accuracy has been estimated using a small number of independent measurements obtained from selected locations and time periods and ground-truth/field program efforts
  • Stage 2 Validated: Product accuracy has been assessed over a widely distributed set of locations and time periods via several ground-truthand validation efforts
  • Stage 3 Validated: Product accuracy has been assessed and the uncertainties in the product well established via independent measurements in a systematic and statistically robust way representing global conditions