National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration
United States Department of Commerce


FY 1981

Nimbus-7 coastal zone color scanner: System description and initial imagery

Hovis, W.A., D.K. Clark, F. Anderson, R.W. Austin, W.H. Wilson, E.T. Baker, D. Ball, H.R. Gordon, J.L. Mueller, S.Z. El-Sayed, B. Sturm, R.C. Wrigley, and C.S. Yentsch

Science, 210, 60–63, doi: 10.1126/science.210.4465.60 (1980)

The Coastal Zone Color Scanner (CZCS) on Nimbus-7, launched in October 1978, is the only sensor in orbit that is specifically designed to study living marine resources. The initial imagery confirms that CZCS data can be processed to a level that reveals subtle variations in the concentration of phytoplankton pigments. This development has potential applications for the study of large-scale patchiness in phytoplankton distributions, the evolution of spring blooms, water mass boundaries, and mesoscale circulation patterns.

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