MODIS-SRTM Land-Water-Distribution


The left map shows the distribution of the MODIS tiles. For each tile containing some land a data set is available. "h" and "v" allow the orientation on this map and are required to obtain the land-water-distribution of the region of interest; tile h18v03 covers the North Sea region, for example (right map).



This data set is only available for a restricted user group, please contact us if you want to access these data.

RESTRICTED only accessable in CEN/MPI net or via CliSAP login  What does that mean?

Get the data via our MODIS Tiles Download Tool (choose a tile and get the corresponding data paths and THREDDS download links)

Data access via file system /data/icdc/land/modis-srtm_landwaterdistribution

Similar to topography and land information this data set is not visualized in the LAS.


Internal access for ZMAW users:


The data set contains a new, high resolution (250 m) data set of the MOD44W Collection 6 land-water distribution. This data set is primarily based on results of the Space Shuttle Topographic Mission (SRTM) for the region 60°S to 60°N, on global 16-day composites of TERRA-MODIS and AQUA-MODIS data for 60°-90°N, and on the Mosaic of Antarctica (MOA). Gaps in the region covered by SRTM are filled with MODIS data also.

In contrast to the previous version this new version is dynamic, i.e. available annually, and contains information about burned areas (scars).

A brief description of this data set and the improvement compared to earlier versions is given in the Users Guide as well as on the respective web page.

Last update of this data set at ICDC: September 20, 2019.

To top


Name Unit Comment
land-water distribution (0 or 1) -- --
quality flag 1 ... 8, 10 Here 6: Burn scar (from MCD64A1)

To top

Coverage, spatial and temporal resolution

Period and temporal resolution: 

  • 2000 to 2015
  • yearly

Coverage and spatial resolution:  

  • Global
  • Spatial resolution: 250 m x 250 m
  • Geographic longitude: -180°E to 180°E
  • Geographic latitude: -90°N to 90°N
  • Dimension: 10° x 10° MODIS tiles, each tile contains 4800 columns x 4800 rows
  • Altitude: follows topography


  • NetCDF

To top

Data quality

Data quality was checked through comparison with in situ observations and independent, finer resolved air- and space-borne sensors (e.g. LandSAT and ASTER), and the collection 5 product (see Users Guide and references therein).

Compare to the previous version several improvements have been made (see here).

The data set includes a quality flag.

To top


Mark Carroll
Dept. of Geography, University of Maryland
email: markc (at) umd.edu

phone: Voice: 605-594-6116 | Toll Free: 866-573-3222
email: lpdaac (at) usgs.gov or https://lpdaac.usgs.gov/lpdaac-contact-us/

Stefan Kern
ICDC / CEN / University of Hamburg
email: stefan.kern (at) uni-hamburg.de

To top


  • Users Guide
  • Carroll, M. L., DiMiceli, C.M., Townshend, J.R.G., Sohlberg, R.A., Elders, A.I., Devadiga, S., Sayer, A.M., and Levy, R.C., 2016, Development of an operational land water mask for MODIS Collection 6, and influence on downstream data products, International Journal of Digital Earth, 10(2), 207-218, https://doi.org/10.1080/17538947.2016.1232756
  • Carroll, M.L., Townshend, J.R., DiMiceli, C.M., Noojipady, P., and Sohlberg, R.A., 2009, A new global raster water mask at 250 m resolution, International Journal of Digital Earth, 2, 291-308.
  • Giglio, L., Loboda, T., Roy, D.P., Quayle, B., and Justice, C.O., 2009, An active-fire based burned area mapping algorithm for the MODIS sensor. Remote Sensing of Environment, 113, 408-420.

To top

Data citation

Carroll, M.L., DiMiceli, C.M., Wooten, M.R., Hubbard, A.B., Sohlberg, R.A., Townshend, J.R.G (2017). MOD44W MODIS/Terra Land Water Mask Derived from MODIS and SRTM L3 Global 250m SIN Grid V006 [Data set]. NASA EOSDIS Land Processes DAAC. LAst accessed 2019-08-26 from https://doi.org/10.5067/MODIS/MOD44W.006, provided as tiles in netCDF file format by the Integrated Climate Data Center (ICDC, http://icdc.cen.uni-hamburg.de).

###BACKLINK###     ###TOPLINK###