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Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Editor: Joseph N. Mait
  • Vol. 53, Iss. 4 — Feb. 1, 2014
  • pp: 648–665

Diurnal remote sensing of coastal/oceanic waters: a radiometric analysis for Geostationary Coastal and Air Pollution Events

Nima Pahlevan, Zhongping Lee, Chuanmin Hu, and John R. Schott  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 53, Issue 4, pp. 648-665 (2014)

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Optical remote sensing systems aboard geostationary platforms can provide high-frequency observations of bio-optical properties in dynamical coastal/oceanic waters. From the end-user standpoint, it is recognized that the fidelity of daily science products relies heavily on the radiometric sensitivity/performance of the imaging system. This study aims to determine the theoretical detection limits for bio-optical properties observed diurnally from a geostationary orbit. The analysis is based upon coupled radiative transfer simulations and the minimum radiometric requirements defined for the GEOstationary Coastal and Air Pollution Events (GEO-CAPE) mission. The diurnal detection limits are found for the optically active constituents of water, including near-surface concentrations of chlorophyll-a (CHL) and total suspended solids (TSS), and the absorption of colored dissolved organic matter ( a CDOM ). The diurnal top-of-atmosphere radiance ( L t ) is modeled for several locations across the field of regard (FOR) to investigate the radiometric sensitivity at different imaging geometries. It is found that, in oceanic waters ( CHL = 0.07 mg / m 3 ), detecting changes smaller than 0.01 mg / m 3 in CHL is feasible for all locations and hours except for late afternoon observations on the edge of the FOR. For more trophic/turbid waters ( 0.6 < CHL < 4.5 ), the proposed system is found sensitive to changes (in CHL) smaller than 0.1 mg / m 3 when the air mass fraction (AMF) is less than 5. For a CDOM ( 440 ) , detecting the changes larger than 0.02 m 1 ( 0.08 < a CDOM ( 440 ) < 0.36 ) is found feasible for most of the imaging geometries. This is equivalent to AMF < 5 . For TSS, changes on the order of Δ TSS = 0.1 g / m 3 ( 0.5 < TSS < 4.5 ) are detectable from early morning to late afternoon across the entire FOR. This study gives insights into the radiometric sensitivity of the GEO-CAPE mission in identifying the changes in bio-optical properties at top-of-atmosphere (TOA), which aids in a more lucid understanding of the uncertainties associated with the surface products.

© 2014 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(010.4450) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Oceanic optics
(010.7340) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Water
(010.5620) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Radiative transfer
(010.5630) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Radiometry
(010.0280) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Remote sensing and sensors

ToC Category:
Atmospheric and Oceanic Optics

Original Manuscript: July 8, 2013
Revised Manuscript: December 9, 2013
Manuscript Accepted: December 10, 2013
Published: January 28, 2014

Virtual Issues
Vol. 9, Iss. 4 Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics

Nima Pahlevan, Zhongping Lee, Chuanmin Hu, and John R. Schott, "Diurnal remote sensing of coastal/oceanic waters: a radiometric analysis for Geostationary Coastal and Air Pollution Events," Appl. Opt. 53, 648-665 (2014)

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