DMSP OLS: Nighttime Lights Time Series Version 4, Defense Meteorological Program Operational Linescan System (NOAA/DMSP-OLS/NIGHTTIME_LIGHTS)

Version Version 4

The Defense Meteorological Program (DMSP) Operational Line-Scan System
(OLS) has a unique capability to detect visible and near-infrared (VNIR)
emission sources at night.

Version 4 of the DMSP-OLS Nighttime Lights Time Series consists of
cloud-free composites made using all the available archived DMSP-OLS smooth
resolution data for calendar years. In cases where two satellites were
collecting data, two composites were produced.

avg_visThe average of the visible band digital number values with no further filtering.
stable_lightsThe cleaned up avg_vis contains the lights from cities, towns, and other sites with persistent lighting, including gas flares. Ephemeral events, such as fires, have been discarded. The background noise was identified and replaced with values of zero.
cf_cvgCloud-free coverages tally the total number of observations that went into each 30-arc second grid cell. This band can be used to identify areas with low numbers of observations where the quality is reduced.
avg_lights_x_pctThe average visible band digital number (DN) of cloud-free light detections multiplied by the percent frequency of light detection. The inclusion of the percent frequency of detection term normalizes the resulting digital values for variations in the persistence of lighting. For instance, the value for a light only detected half the time is discounted by 50%. Note that this product contains detections from fires and a variable amount of background noise.


NOAA (producer, licensor)
Google Earth Engine (host)
STAC Version 0.6.0
Keywords dmsp, imagery, lights, nighttime, noaa, ols, visible, yearly
License proprietary
Temporal Extent 12/31/1991, 4:00:00 PM - 12/31/2013, 4:00:00 PM
Type image_collection
GSD arc secondsm