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Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Vol. 38, Iss. 3 — Jan. 20, 1999
  • pp: 451–455

Atmospheric correction of ocean color sensors: computing atmospheric diffuse transmittance

Menghua Wang  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 38, Issue 3, pp. 451-455 (1999)

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Using the reciprocal equation derived by Yang and Gordon [Appl. Opt. 36, 7887–7897 (1997)] for atmospheric diffuse transmittance of the ocean–atmosphere system, I examined the accuracy of an analytical equation proposed by Gordon et al. [Appl. Opt. 22, 20–36 (1983)] in computing the atmospheric diffuse transmittance for wavelengths from 412 to 865 nm for both a pure Rayleigh and a two-layer Rayleigh-aerosol atmosphere overlying a flat Fresnel-reflecting ocean surface. It was found that for viewing angles up to approximately 40°, the analytical formula produces errors usually between 2% and 3% for nonabsorbing and weakly absorbing aerosols and for aerosol optical thicknesses τ a ≤ 0.4. The error increases with an increase in aerosol absorption, aerosol optical thickness, and viewing angle, and with the decrease of wavelength. By a simple numerical fit to modify the analytical formula, the atmospheric diffuse transmittance can be accurately computed usually to within ∼1% (∼0.5% in most cases) for a variety of aerosol models, aerosol optical thicknesses τ a ≤ 0.6, viewing angles θ ≤ 60°, different aerosol vertical structure distribution, and for wavelengths from 412 to 865 nm.

© 1999 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(010.1290) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Atmospheric optics
(010.1320) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Atmospheric transmittance
(010.4450) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Oceanic optics
(280.0280) Remote sensing and sensors : Remote sensing and sensors

Original Manuscript: April 3, 1998
Revised Manuscript: October 7, 1998
Published: January 20, 1999

Menghua Wang, "Atmospheric correction of ocean color sensors: computing atmospheric diffuse transmittance," Appl. Opt. 38, 451-455 (1999)

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  1. H. R. Gordon, M. Wang, “Retrieval of water-leaving radiance and aerosol optical thickness over the oceans with SeaWiFS: a preliminary algorithm,” Appl. Opt. 33, 443–452 (1994). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
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