OSA's Digital Library

Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Vol. 38, Iss. 6 — Feb. 20, 1999
  • pp: 937–944

Validation study of the SeaWiFS oxygen A-band absorption correction: comparing the retrieved cloud optical thicknesses from SeaWiFS measurements

Menghua Wang  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 38, Issue 6, pp. 937-944 (1999)

View Full Text Article

Enhanced HTML    Acrobat PDF (491 KB)

Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Browse by Journal and Year


Lookup Conference Papers

Close Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Article Tools



Atmospheric correction in ocean-color remote sensing corrects more than 90% of signals in the visible contributed from the atmosphere measured at satellite altitude. The Sea-viewing Wide Field-of-view Sensor (SeaWiFS) atmospheric correction uses radiances measured at two near-infrared wavelengths centered at 765 and 865 nm to estimate the atmospheric contribution and extrapolate it into the visible range. However, the SeaWiFS 765-nm band, which covers 745–785 nm, completely encompasses the oxygen A-band absorption. The O2A-band absorption usually reduces more than 10–15% of the measured radiance at the SeaWiFS 765-nm band. Ding and Gordon [Appl. Opt. 34, 2068–2080 (1995)] proposed a numerical scheme to remove the O2A-band absorption effects from the atmospheric correction. This scheme has been implemented in the SeaWiFS ocean-color imagery data-processing system. I present results that demonstrate a method to validate the SeaWiFS 765-nm O2A-band absorption correction by analyzing the sensor-measured radiances at 765 and 865 nm taken looking at the clouds over the oceans. SeaWiFS is usually not saturated with cloudy scenes because of its bilinear gain design. Because the optical and radiative properties of water clouds are nearly independent of the wavelengths ranging from 400 to 865 nm, the sensor-measured radiances above the cloud at the two near-infrared wavelengths are comparable. The retrieved cloud optical thicknesses from the SeaWiFS band 7 measurements are compared for cases with and without the O2A-band absorption corrections and from the band 8 measurements. The results show that, for air-mass values of 2–5, the current SeaWiFS O2A-band absorption correction works reasonably well. The validation method is potentially applicable for in-orbit relative calibration for SeaWiFS and other satellite sensors.

© 1999 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(010.1290) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Atmospheric optics
(010.4450) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Oceanic optics
(030.5620) Coherence and statistical optics : Radiative transfer
(280.0280) Remote sensing and sensors : Remote sensing and sensors

Original Manuscript: July 14, 1998
Revised Manuscript: October 22, 1998
Published: February 20, 1999

Menghua Wang, "Validation study of the SeaWiFS oxygen A-band absorption correction: comparing the retrieved cloud optical thicknesses from SeaWiFS measurements," Appl. Opt. 38, 937-944 (1999)

Sort:  Author  |  Year  |  Journal  |  Reset  


  1. S. B. Hooker, W. E. Esaias, G. C. Feldman, W. W. Gregg, C. R. McClain, An Overview of SeaWiFS and Ocean Color, Vol. 1 of SeaWiFS Tech. Rep. Series, (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md., 1992).
  2. 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]
  3. H. R. Gordon, “Atmospheric correction of ocean color imagery in the Earth Observing System era,” J. Geophys. Res. 102, 17,081–17,106 (1997). [CrossRef]
  4. K. Ding, H. R. Gordon, “Analysis of the influence of O2A-band absorption on atmospheric correction of ocean color imagery,” Appl. Opt. 34, 2068–2080 (1995). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  5. H. Yang, H. R. Gordon, “Remote sensing of ocean color: assessment of water-leaving radiance bidirectional effects on atmospheric diffuse transmittance,” Appl. Opt. 36, 7887–7897 (1997). [CrossRef]
  6. H. R. Gordon, M. Wang, “Influence of oceanic whitecaps on atmospheric correction of ocean-color sensor,” Appl. Opt. 33, 7754–7763 (1994). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  7. R. S. Fraser, The Effect of Oxygen Absorption on Band-7 Radiance, Vol. 27 of SeaWiFS Tech. Rep. Series, (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md., 1995).
  8. R. A. Barnes, A. W. Holmes, W. E. Esaias, Stray Light in the SeaWiFS Radiometer, Vol. 31 of SeaWiFS Tech. Rep. Series, NASA Tech. Memo. 104566 (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md., 1995).
  9. S. Twomey, T. Cocks, “Spectral reflectance of clouds in the near-infrared: comparison of measurements and calculations,” J. Meteorol. Soc. Jpn. 60, 583–592 (1982).
  10. S. Twomey, T. Cocks, “Remote sensing of cloud parameters from spectral reflectance measurements in the near-infrared,” Beitr. Phys. Atmos. 62, 172–179 (1989).
  11. T. Nakajima, M. D. King, “Determination of the optical thickness and effective particle radius of clouds from reflected solar radiation measurements. I. Theory,” J. Atmos. Sci. 47, 1878–1893 (1990). [CrossRef]
  12. M. Wang, M. D. King, “Correction of Rayleigh scattering effects in cloud optical thickness retrievals,” J. Geophys. Res. 102, 25,915–25,926 (1997). [CrossRef]

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