Glossary

A B C D E F G I L M N O P R S T U V W X Y Z

Measurement

Used to assign a number to a characteristic of an object or event, which can be compared with other objects or events.  

Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS)

A key instrument aboard NASA’s Terra and Aqua satellites. MODIS instruments view the entire Earth’s surface every 1-2 days, acquiring data in 36 spectral bands. It plays a vital role in the development of validated, global, interactive Earth system models which aim to accurately predict global change.  

For more information, see NASA: MODIS.  

MultiSpectral Instrument (MSI)

The MSI is carried on the Sentinel-2 satellites.Light reflected up to the MSI instrument from the Earth and its atmosphere is collected by a three-mirror (M1, M2 and M3) telescope and focused, via a beam-splitter, onto two Focal Plane Assemblies (FPAs): one for the ten VNIR wavelengths and one for the three SWIR wavelengths.

For more information see: European Space Agency missions - Sentinel-2

Multispectral Scanner System (MSS)

A line-scanning instrument carried by Landsat satellites that continually scans the Earth in a 185 km swath and collects data over a variety of wavelengths.  

For more information, see Landsat: Multispectral Scanner System.