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GLDAS Specifications

GLDAS currently can run with the following specifications and improvements such as additional datasets (forcing and near surface), new land surface models, and algorithms are ongoing in the project.

Projection Lat/Lon
Spatial Extent All land north of 60 degrees S
Spatial Resolution 1 degree and 1/4 degree
Time Period 1/1/1948 - present
Temporal Resolution 15 minute time steps, 3-hourly output fields
Forcing Multiple datasets derived from satellite measurements and atmospheric analyses
Forcing Heights 2 m for air temperature and specific humidity, 10 m for wind
Elevation Definition GTOPO30
Vegetation Definition University of Maryland, 1 km
Soils Definition Reynolds, Jackson, and Rawls [2000]
Land Surface Models Noah, VIC, Catchment LSM
Output Format NetCDF, GDS

The land surface models currently run in GLDAS have following number of vertical levels and depths.

GLDAS-2 MODELS Number of layers Depth
Noah 4 layers 0-0.1, 0.1-0.4, 0.4-1.0, 1.0-2.0 m
VIC 3 layers 0-0.3 surface, spatially variable in the second and third layers (data below)
Catchment No layers surface, root zone, and profile where profile includes surface and root zone and root zone includes surface.


Land Surface Datasets

Land Cover Classification Global 1 km Static Static
Boston University Leaf Area Index (derived from both AVHRR and MODIS) Global 1 km 1981-Current (AVHRR), 2000-Current (MODIS) Monthly
Soils Database from Reynolds, Jackson, and Rawls (2000) Global 5 minute Not applicable Not applicable
Elevation Database from GTOPO30 Global 30 second Not applicable Not applicable