OSA's Digital Library

Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Vol. 35, Iss. 36 — Dec. 20, 1996
  • pp: 7144–7150

Prediction of apparent extinction for optical transmission through rain

H. Vasseur and C. J. Gibbins  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 35, Issue 36, pp. 7144-7150 (1996)

View Full Text Article

Enhanced HTML    Acrobat PDF (309 KB)

Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Browse by Journal and Year


Lookup Conference Papers

Close Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Article Tools



At optical wavelengths, geometrical optics holds that the extinction efficiency of raindrops is equal to two. This approximation yields a wavelength-independent extinction coefficient that, however, can hardly be used to predict accurately rain extinction measured in optical transmissions. Actually, in addition to the extinct direct incoming light, a significant part of the power scattered by the rain particles reaches the receiver. This leads to a reduced apparent extinction that depends on both rain characteristics and link parameters. A simple method is proposed to evaluate this apparent extinction. It accounts for the additional scattered power that enters the receiver when one considers the forward-scattering pattern of the raindrops as well as the multiple-scattering effects using, respectively, the Fraunhofer diffraction and Twersky theory. It results in a direct analytical formula that enables a quick and accurate estimation of the rain apparent extinction and highlights the influence of the link parameters. Predictions of apparent extinction through rain are found in excellent agreement with measurements in the visible and IR regions.

© 1996 Optical Society of America

Original Manuscript: January 16, 1996
Revised Manuscript: May 15, 1996
Published: December 20, 1996

H. Vasseur and C. J. Gibbins, "Prediction of apparent extinction for optical transmission through rain," Appl. Opt. 35, 7144-7150 (1996)

Sort:  Author  |  Year  |  Journal  |  Reset  


  1. A. Deepak, M. A. Box, “Forwardscattering corrections for optical extinction measurements in aerosol media. 2: Poly-dispersions,” Appl. Opt. 17, 3169–3176 (1978).
  2. W. G. Tam, A. Zardecki, “Multiple scattering corrections to the Beer-Lambert law. 1: Open detector,” Appl. Opt. 21, 2405–2412 (1982).
  3. L. R. Bissonnette, “Multiscattering model for propagation of narrow light beams in aerosol media,” Appl. Opt. 27, 2478–2484 (1988).
  4. C. F. Bohren, D. R. Huffman, Absorption and Scattering of Light by Small Particles (Wiley, New York, 1983), p. 530.
  5. L. Brillouin, “The scattering cross section of spheres for electromagnetic waves,” J. Appl. Phys. 20, 1110–1125 (1949).
  6. A. Ishimaru, Wave Propagation and Scattering in Random Media, Volume 2 (Academic, New York, 1978), Chap. 14, pp. 253–294.
  7. C. J. Gibbins, D. G. Carter, P. A. Egget, K. A. Lidiard, M. G. Pike, M. A. Tracey, E. H. White, J. M. Woodroffe, U. M. Yilmaz, “A 500 m experimental range for propagation studies at millimetre, infrared and optical wavelengths,” J. Inst. Electron. Radio Eng. 57, 227–234 (1987).
  8. T. Manabe, T. Ihara, Y. Furuhama, “Inference of raindrop size distribution from attenuation and rain rate measurements,” IEEE Trans. Antennas Propag. AP-32, 474–478 (1984).
  9. J. S. Marshall, W. M. K. Palmer, “The distribution of raindrops with size,” J. Meteorol. 5, 165–166 (1948).
  10. J. Joss, A. Waldvogel, “Raindrop size distributions and sampling size errors,” J. Atmos. Sci. 26, 566–569 (1969).

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.


Fig. 1 Fig. 2 Fig. 3

« Previous Article  |  Next Article »

OSA is a member of CrossRef.

CrossCheck Deposited