The Stratospheric Aerosol and Gas Experiment (SAGE) III, scheduled for a first launch in mid-1998, will be making measurements of the extinction that is due to aerosols and gases at many wavelengths between 385 and 1550 nm. In the troposphere and wintertime polar stratosphere, extinction will also occur because of the presence of cloud along the optical path from the Sun to the satellite instrument. We describe a method for separating the effects of aerosol and cloud using the extinction at 525, 1020, and 1550 nm and present the results of simulation studies. These studies show that the new method will work well under background nonvolcanic aerosol conditions in the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere. Under conditions of severe volcanic contamination, the error rate for the separation of aerosol and cloud may rise as high as 30%.
© 1997 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: February 6, 1997
Revised Manuscript: August 4, 1997
Published: November 20, 1997
Geoffrey S. Kent, Pi-Huan Wang, and Kristi M. Skeens, "Discrimination of cloud and aerosol in the Stratospheric Aerosol and Gas Experiment III occultation data," Appl. Opt. 36, 8639-8649 (1997)