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Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Vol. 42, Iss. 24 — Aug. 20, 2003
  • pp: 4909–4913

Three-signal method for accurate measurements of depolarization ratio with lidar

Jens Reichardt, Rudolf Baumgart, and Thomas J. McGee  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 42, Issue 24, pp. 4909-4913 (2003)

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A method is presented that permits the determination of atmospheric depolarization-ratio profiles from three elastic-backscatter lidar signals with different sensitivity to the state of polarization of the backscattered light. The three-signal method is far less sensitive to experimental errors and does not require calibration of the measurement, as is the case of the two-signal lidar technique conventionally used for the observation of depolarization ratios. The three-signal method is applied to a polar stratospheric cloud observation. In the analysis we show that, depending on the statistical error of the measurement and on the lidar system parameters, the new method requires minimum cloud volume depolarization ratios to be applicable; in the case study presented, this threshold is ∼0.2. Depolarization ratios determined with the three-signal method can be used to accurately calibrate measurements with the conventional two-signal technique.

© 2003 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(280.1310) Remote sensing and sensors : Atmospheric scattering
(280.3640) Remote sensing and sensors : Lidar
(290.1090) Scattering : Aerosol and cloud effects
(290.1350) Scattering : Backscattering

Original Manuscript: December 19, 2002
Revised Manuscript: May 22, 2003
Published: August 20, 2003

Jens Reichardt, Rudolf Baumgart, and Thomas J. McGee, "Three-signal method for accurate measurements of depolarization ratio with lidar," Appl. Opt. 42, 4909-4913 (2003)

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