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You are here: GES DISC Home Hydrology Data Holdings Parameters SNOW WATER EQUIVALENT


Other Names



Snow Water Equivalent (SWE) is a measurement of the amount of water contained in snow pack. It can be considered as the depth of water that would theoretically result if the whole snow pack instantaneously melts. Snow Water Equivalent (SWE) is the product of snow depth and snow density. It can be presented in units of either kg/m2 or m:

  • SWE (kg/m2) = snow depth (m) x snow density (kg/m3)
  • SWE (m) = snow depth (m) x snow density (kg/m3) / water density (kg/m3)


  1. Surface/subsurface runoff modeling
  2. Water cycle
  3. Energy cycle
  4. Climate prediction model

GES DISC Datasets

To access products that have a specific parameter click on the corresponding 'data access' links in the table below.

Parameter Units Platform /Instrument Data
Begin Date End Date Access Doc
Snow Water Equivalent kg/m2 GLDAS Model 1979 present ftp Y
Snow Water Equivalent kg/m^2 NLDAS Model 1979 present ftp Y

Other sources for data

  1. LDAS
  2. MODIS
  3. SSD
  5. NSIDS
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Last updated: Mar 14, 2012 09:35 AM ET