The post-launch degradation of the visible (channel 1: 0.58- 068 microns) and near-infrared (channel 2: approx. 0.72 - l.l microns) channels of the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) on the NOAA-7, -9, and -11 Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellites (POES) was estimated using the south-eastern part of the Libyan Desert as a radiometrically stable calibration target. The relative annual degradation rates, in per cent, for the two channels are, respectively: 3.6 and 4.3 (NOAA-7); 5.9 and 3.5 (NOAA-9); and 1.2 and 2.0 (NOAA-11). Using the relative degradation rates thus determined, in conjunction with absolute calibrations based on congruent path aircraft/satellite radiance measurements over White Sands, New Mexico (USA), the variation in time of the absolute gain or slope of the AVHRR on NOAA-9 was evaluated. Inter-satellite calibration linkages were established, using the AVHRR on NOAA-9 as a normalization standard. Formulae for the calculation of calibrated radiances and albedos (AVHRR usage), based on these interlinkages, are given for the three AVHRRs.