Multispectral data from the Landsat 5 (L5) Thematic Mapper (TM) sensor provide the backbone of the extensive archive of moderate-resolution Earth imagery. Even after more than 24 years of service, the L5 TM is still operational. Given the longevity of the satellite, the detectors have aged and the sensor's radiometric characteristics have changed since launch. The calibration procedures and parameters in the National Land Archive Production System (NLAPS) have also changed with time. Revised radiometric calibrations in 2003 and 2007 have improved the radiometric accuracy of recently processed data. This letter uses the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) as a metric to evaluate the radiometric calibration. The calibration change has improved absolute calibration accuracy, consistency over time, and consistency with Landsat 7 (L7) Enhanced Thematic radiometry and will provide the basis for continued long-term studies of the Earth's land surfaces.
Additional publication details
Intra-annual NDVI validation of the Landsat 5 TM radiometric calibration