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MODIS/Terra+Aqua Land Cover Type Yearly L3 Global 500m SIN Grid V006

The Terra and Aqua combined Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) Land Cover Type (MCD12Q1) Version 6 data product provides global land cover types at yearly intervals (2001-2018), derived from six different classification schemes listed in the User Guide ( The MCD12Q1 Version 6 data product is derived using supervised classifications of MODIS Terra and Aqua reflectance data. The supervised classifications then undergo additional post-processing that incorporate prior knowledge and ancillary information to further refine specific classes. Layers for Land Cover Type 1-5, Land Cover Property 1-3, Land Cover Property Assessment 1-3, Land Cover Quality Control (QC), and a Land Water Mask are provided in each MCD12Q1 Version 6 Hierarchical Data Format 4 (HDF4) file. Improvements/Changes from Previous Versions * Version 5 used five classification schemes whereas Version 6 uses six classification schemes, including an entirely new classification scheme based on the Land Cover Classification System (LCCS) from the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO). * New gap-filled spectro-temporal features developed by applying smoothing splines to the Nadir Bidirectional Reflectance Distribution Function (BRDF)–Adjusted Reflectance (NBAR) time series. This change results in significant changes between land cover classifications in Version 5 and Version 6 data. * Algorithm used in Version 6 includes a post-processing Hidden Markov Model (HMM) that reduces spurious year-to-year variation in class labels. * Algorithm refinements were implemented in upstream MODIS data used as inputs, such as the cloud mask, surface reflectance, and NBAR data products. * The value of "Water" in the IGBP classification scheme has changed from "0" to "17." * The data product should not be used to determine post-classification land cover change between years due to the uncertainty in the land cover labels for any one year. More information can be found on page 2 of the User Guide (

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