Total H2O column data record


Total H2O column data record provides long-term information about vertical column densities of water vapour in the atmosphere. It has been reprocessed with the latest algorithm version (see below).


Data record

Satellites and instruments

GOME-2/Metop-A and GOME-2/Metop-B

Algorithm version

GDP 4.8

Time period

  • 23/01/2007 - 16/11/2016 (GOME-2/Metop-A)
  • 13/12/2012 - 16/11/2016 (GOME-2/Metop-B)

Theoretical basis

The retrieval of the product is based on GOME-2 (ir)radiance measurements in the wavelength region of 332-359 nm.


DLR generates vertical column products with Universal Processor for UV/VIS Atmospheric Spectrometers (UPAS), inside which the GOME Data Processor (GDP) operational algorithm is the baseline algorithm for the trace gas column retrievals from GOME-2. The latest GDP 4.8 uses an optimised DOAS (Differential Optical Absorption Spectroscopy) algorithm to determine the trace gas slant column. The DOAS slant column fitting is followed by Air Mass Factor (AMF) conversions to generate vertical columns.

Units and spatial resolution

H2O columns are given as vertical column densities (kg/m2).

GOME-2/Metop-A has 24 forward-scan pixels with a nominal resolution of 40 km x 40 km, and 8 back-scan pixels with a nominal resolution of 120 km x 40 km.

GOME-2/Metop-B has 24 forward-scan pixels with a nominal resolution of 80 km x 40 km, and 8 back-scan pixels with a nominal resolution of 240 km x 40 km.

Both forward- and back-scan pixels are processed and written to the product.


This product has been validated by German Aerospace Center (DLR) and Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI). The validation is performed by comparison using ground-based observations obtained from University of Wyoming and comparison to SSM/I measurements (open ocean only) and by comparing to similar data retrieved from the SCIAMACHY/ENVISAT and GOME/ERS-2 instruments.

Archiving and dissemination

This product is archived at the DLR and available via data record access page.

File format

The product is delivered in HDF5 format, each file containing one satellite orbit (sunlit portion).


GOME-2 pages at DLR: ATMOS