An iterative solution is developed for the temperature and absorbing gas profiles of an atmosphere from spectral and angular measurements of atmospheric radiance. This iterative solution is novel in that there is no limiting assumption made about the analytical form of the profile imposed by the number of radiance observations available. The solution is demonstrated through the determination of temperature and water vapor profiles of the earth’s atmosphere from Nimbus III and Nimbus IV Satellite InfraRed Spectrometer (SIRS) observations. The solutions are compared with conventional rawinsonde and rocket-sonde observations. The results indicate that this solution can be used effectively to specify the general meteorological characteristics of an atmosphere from satellite or ground-based radiometric observations.
W. L. Smith, "Iterative Solution of the Radiative Transfer Equation for the Temperature and Absorbing Gas Profile of an Atmosphere," Appl. Opt. 9, 1993-1999 (1970)