Submitted by jlegeais on Wed, 2017-11-15 12:02
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The first version of the Sea Level Climate Change Initiative (SL_cci) products was initially distributed in September 2012. A full reprocessing of the sea level ECV has been produced and is now available for the users. This v2.0 dataset covers the period Jan. 1993 to Dec. 2015.

Access to the ECV Products and further details can be obtained by sending an email with your interest direct to the team:

Unless you make a statement in your email that you do not agree, your email address will be kept so that you can be further informed of potential evolutions regarding the dataset. It will not be used for any other purpose.

The ‘Sea Level’ is a multi-satellite merged product that consists in a database of different elements that can be referenced with the following DOI: 10.5270/esa-sea_level_cci-1993_2015-v_2.0-201612. These elements are:

  • Time series of gridded Sea Level Anomalies (SLA): 
    DOI: 10.5270/esa-sea_level_cci-MSLA-1993_2015-v_2.0-201612
    The SLA grids are calculated after merging all the altimetry mission measurements together into monthly grids with a spatial resolution of 1/4 of degree.
  • Oceanic indicators: 
    Static files over the whole altimetry operating period describing the evolution of the SLA grids just previously mentioned
    • Global Mean Sea Level temporal evolution
      DOI: 10.5270/esa-sea_level_cci-IND_MSL_MERGED-1993_2015-v_2.0-201612
    • Regional MSL trends
      Mean Sea Level changes geographic distribution
      DOI: 10.5270/esa-sea_level_cci-IND_MSLTR_MERGED-1993_2015-v_2.0-201612
    • Maps of the amplitude and phase of the annual cycle
      DOI: 10.5270/esa-sea_level_cci-IND_MSLAMPH_MERGED-1993_2015-v_2.0-201612
  • Fundamental Climate Data Record (FCDR):
    The FCDRs are the along-track SLA derived from each altimeter mission, available at 1Hz resolution corresponding to a ground distance of about 7 km. The files include a quality control and all altimeter standards applied in the SLA calculation. Global and regional inter missions biases are also included.

The corresponding Product User Guide (PUG) can be found in the Public Documents section under the 'technical' label.


In addition of the DOIs mentioned above, please use both citations below to acknowledge the use of this sea level ECV v2.0:

Legeais, J.-F., Ablain, M., Zawadzki, L., Zuo, H., Johannessen, J. A., Scharffenberg, M. G., Fenoglio-Marc, L., Fernandes, M. J., Andersen, O. B., Rudenko, S., Cipollini, P., Quartly, G. D., Passaro, M., Cazenave, A., and Benveniste, J.: An improved and homogeneous altimeter sea level record from the ESA Climate Change Initiative, Earth Syst. Sci. Data, 10, 281-301,, 2018.

And also the following one (providing additional information on how the SL_cci ECV v2.0 has been built):

Quartly, G. D., Legeais, J.-F., Ablain, M., Zawadzki, L., Fernandes, M. J., Rudenko, S., Carrère, L., García, P. N., Cipollini, P., Andersen, O. B., Poisson, J.-C., Mbajon Njiche, S., Cazenave, A., and Benveniste, J.: A new phase in the production of quality-controlled sea level data, Earth Syst. Sci. Data, 9, 557-572,, 2017.

Other sea level products

  • Within the SL_cci project, the estimation of the sea level has been improved in the Arctic ocean. A CLS/PML sea level Arctic product (maps of sea level anomalies) based on the Envisat and SARAL/AltiKa missions has been produced and is available for the users. 
  • Another DTU/TUM gridded sea level product at high latitudes (Arctic and Antarctic) has been produced based on ERS-1 & 2, Envisat and CryoSat-2 missions and is also available for the users.
  • The altimeter SL_cci sea level anomalies have been produced with the use of the Dynamic Atmospheric Correction (DAC) forced by the ERA-Interim reanalysis. The associated 6-hourly global grids are available for the users. 


The description of some specific technical issues related to the corrections and algorithms used in the SL_cci products can be found in the list of publications of the team. Some references related to the quality assessment of the SL_cci products by the Climate Research Group can also be found in this list, as well as other peer-reviewed articles related to the SL_cci project. The list can be found here.