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Department of Physics


Deep space climate observatory (DSCOVR) spacecraft drifts about the Lagrangian point ≈1.4–1.6 × 10 km from Earth, where its Earth polychromatic imaging camera (EPIC) observes the sun-lit face of the Earth every 1 to 2 hours. At any instance, there is a preferred (specular) spot on the globe, where a glint may be observed by EPIC. While monitoring reflectance at these spots (terrestrial glitter), we observe occasional intense glints originating from neither ocean surface nor cloud ice and we argue that mountain lakes high in the Andes are among the causes. We also examine time-averaged reflectance at the spots and find it exceeding that of neighbors, with the excess monotonically increasing with separation distance. This specular excess is found in all channels and is more pronounced in the latest and best-calibrated version of EPIC data, thus opening the possibility of testing geometric calibration by monitoring distant glitter.

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© 2021. The Authors. Earth and Space Science published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of American Geophysical Union. Publisher’s version of record:

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Earth and Space Science

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.


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