We estimate the optical signal for an oceanographic lidar from the one-dimensional transient (time-dependent) radiative transfer equation using the discrete ordinates method. An oceanographic lidar directs a pulsed blue or green laser into the ocean and measures the time-dependent backscattered light. A large number of parameters affect the performance of such a system. Here the optical signal that is available to the receiver is calculated, rather than the receiver output, to reduce the number of parameters. The effects of albedo of a uniform water column are investigated. The effects of a school of fish in the water are also investigated for various school depths, thicknesses, and densities. The attenuation of a lidar signal is found to be greater than the diffuse attenuation coefficient at low albedo and close to it at higher albedo. The presence of fish in the water is found to have a significant effect on the signal at low to moderate albedo, but not at high albedo.
© 1999 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: June 10, 1998
Revised Manuscript: October 14, 1998
Published: February 20, 1999
Kunal Mitra and James H. Churnside, "Transient radiative transfer equation applied to oceanographic lidar," Appl. Opt. 38, 889-895 (1999)