OSA's Digital Library

Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Vol. 38, Iss. 3 — Jan. 20, 1999
  • pp: 585–593

Estimate of the Incoherent-Scattering Contribution to Lidar Backscatter from Clouds

David A. de Wolf, Herman W. J. Russchenberg, and Leo P. Ligthart  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 38, Issue 3, pp. 585-593 (1999)

View Full Text Article

Acrobat PDF (359 KB)

Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Browse by Journal and Year


Lookup Conference Papers

Close Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Article Tools



Lidar backscatter from clouds in the Delft University of Technology experiment is complicated by the fact that the transmitter has a narrow beam width, whereas the receiver has a much wider one. The issue here is whether reception of light scattered incoherently by cloud particles can contribute appreciably to the received power. The incoherent contribution can come from within as well as from outside the transmitter beam but in any case is due to at least two scattering processes in the cloud that are not included in the coherent forward scatter that leads to the usual exponentially attenuated contribution from single-particle backscatter. It is conceivable that a sizable fraction of the total received power within the receiver beam width is due to such incoherent-scattering processes. The ratio of this contribution to the direct (but attenuated) reflection from a single particle is estimated here by means of a distorted-Born approximation to the wave equation (with an incident cw monochromatic wave) and by comparison of the magnitude of the doubly scattered to that of the singly scattered flux. The same expressions are also obtained from a radiative-transfer formalism. The ratio underestimates incoherent multiple scattering when it is not small. Corrections that are due to changes in polarization are noted.

© 1999 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(010.1310) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Atmospheric scattering
(260.2110) Physical optics : Electromagnetic optics
(290.1090) Scattering : Aerosol and cloud effects
(290.1310) Scattering : Atmospheric scattering
(290.1350) Scattering : Backscattering
(290.4210) Scattering : Multiple scattering
(290.7050) Scattering : Turbid media

David A. de Wolf, Herman W. J. Russchenberg, and Leo P. Ligthart, "Estimate of the Incoherent-Scattering Contribution to Lidar Backscatter from Clouds," Appl. Opt. 38, 585-593 (1999)

Sort:  Author  |  Year  |  Journal  |  Reset


  1. C. F. Bohren and D. R. Huffman, Absorption and Scattering of Light by Small Particles (Wiley-Interscience, New York, 1983), Chap. 3.
  2. H. C. van de Hulst, Light Scattering by Small Particles (Wiley, New York, 1957), Chap. 4.
  3. M. Born and E. Wolf, Principles of Optics, 3rd ed. (Pergamon, Oxford, 1965), Sec. 2.4.2.
  4. The denominator of the Lorentz–Lorenz formula for the effective refractive index reduces to a factor of 3.
  5. A. Van Lammeren, H. Russchenberg, A. Apituley, H. Ten Brink, and A. Feijt, “CLARA: a data set to study sensor synergy,” presented at the Workshop on Synergy of Radar and Lidar in Space, Geesthacht, Germany, 12–14 November 1997.
  6. Y. A. Kravtsov and L. A. Apresyan, “Radiative transfer: new aspects of the old theory,” in Progress in Optics, E. Wolf, ed. (Elsevier, Amsterdam, 1996), Vol. 36, pp. 200–212.
  7. A. Mannoni, C. Flesia, P. Bruscaglioni, and A. Ismaeli, “Multiple scattering from Chebyshev particles: Monte Carlo simulations for backscattering in lidar geometry,” Appl. Opt. 36, 7151–7164 (1996).
  8. F. Nicolas, L. R. Bissonnette, and P. H. Flamant, “Lidar effective multiple scattering coefficients in cirrus clouds,” Appl. Opt. 36, 3458–3468 (1997).
  9. L. S. Xu, G. T. Zhang, and L. B. Cheng, “Parameterization of the shortwave radiative properties of water clouds for use in GCMS,” Theor. Appl. Climatol. 55, 211–219 (1996).
  10. C. Flesia and A. V. Starkov, “Multiple scattering from clear atmosphere obscured by transparent crystal clouds in satellite borne lidar sensing,” Appl. Opt. 35, 2637–2641 (1996).
  11. P. Bruscaglioni, “On the contribution of double scattering to the lidar returns from clouds,” Opt. Commun. 27, 9–12 (1978).
  12. L. R. Bissonnette, “Multiple scattering of narrow lightbeams in aerosols,” Appl. Phys. B. 60, 315–323 (1995).
  13. P. Bruscaglioni, A. Ismaeli, and G. Zaccanti, “Monte-Carlo calculations of lidar returns: procedure and results,” Appl. Phys. B. 60, 325–329 (1995).
  14. C. Flesia and P. Schwendimann, “Analytical multiple-scattering extension of the Mie theory: the lidar equation,” Appl. Phys. B. 60, 331–334 (1995).
  15. A. V. Starkov, M. Noormohammadian, and U. G. Oppel, “A stochastic model and a variance-reduction Monte-Carlo method for the calculation of light transport,” Appl. Phys. B. 60, 335–340 (1995).
  16. D. M. Winker and L. R. Poole, “Monte-Carlo calculations of cloud returns for ground-based and space-based radars,” Appl. Phys. B. 60, 341–344 (1995).
  17. E. P. Zege, I. L. Katsev, and I. N. Polonsky, “Analytical solution to lidar return signals from clouds with regard to multiple scattering,” Appl. Phys. B. 60, 345–353 (1995).
  18. L. R. Bissonnette, P. Bruscaglioni, A. Ismaeli, G. Zaccanti, A. Cohen, Y. Benayahu, M. Kleiman, S. Egert, C. Flesia, P. Schendimann, A. V. Starkov, M. Noormohammadian, U. G. Oppel, D. M. Winker, E. P. Zege, I. L. Katsev, and I. N. Polonsky, “Lidar multiple scattering from clouds,” Appl. Phys. B. 60, 355–362 (1995).
  19. A. Ishimaru, Wave Propagation and Scattering in Random Media (Academic, New York, 1978), Vol. 2, Chap. 14.
  20. L. Tsang, J. A. Kong, and R. T. Shin, Theory of Microwave Remote Sensing (Wiley, New York, 1985), Chap. 6.
  21. Ref. 19, Vol. I, Chaps. 7 and 8; see also Ref. 11, pp. 381–382.
  22. P. S. Ray, “Broadband complex refractive index of ice and water,” Appl. Opt. 2, 1836–1844 (1972).

Cited By

Alert me when this paper is cited

OSA is able to provide readers links to articles that cite this paper by participating in CrossRef's Cited-By Linking service. CrossRef includes content from more than 3000 publishers and societies. In addition to listing OSA journal articles that cite this paper, citing articles from other participating publishers will also be listed.

« Previous Article  |  Next Article »

OSA is a member of CrossRef.

CrossCheck Deposited