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Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: Andrew M. Weiner
  • Vol. 21, Iss. 13 — Jul. 1, 2013
  • pp: 15287–15297

Retrieval of diffuse attenuation coefficient in the China seas from surface reflectance

Zhongfeng Qiu, Tingting Wu, and Yuanyuan Su  »View Author Affiliations

Optics Express, Vol. 21, Issue 13, pp. 15287-15297 (2013)

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Accurate estimation of the diffuse attenuation coefficient is important for our understanding the availability of light to underwater communities, which provide critical information for the China seas ecosystem. However, algorithm developments and validations of the diffuse attenuation coefficient in the China seas have been seldom performed before and therefore our knowledge on the quality of retrieval of the diffuse attenuate coefficient is poor. In this paper optical data at 306 sites collected in coastal waters of the China seas between July 2000 and February 2004 are used to evaluate three typical existing Kd(490) models. The in situ Kd(490) varied greatly among different sites from 0.029 m−1 to 10.3 m−1, with a mean of 0.92 ± 1.59 m−1. Results show that the empirical model and the semi-analytical model significantly underestimate the Kd(490) value, with estimated mean values of 0.24 m−1 and 0.5 m−1, respectively. The combined model also shows significant differences when the in situ Kd(490) range from 0.2 m−1 to 1 m−1. Thus, the present study proposes that the three algorithms cannot be directly used to appropriately estimate Kd(490) in the turbid coastal waters of the China seas without a fine tuning for regional applications. In this paper, new Kd(490) algorithms are developed based on the semi-analytical retrieval of the absorption coefficient a(m−1) and the backscattering coefficient bb(m−1) from the reflectance at two wavelengths, 488 and 667 nm for the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) and 490 and 705 nm for the Medium Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MERIS) applications, respectively. With the new approaches, the mean ratio and the relative percentage difference are 1.05 and 4.6%, respectively, based on an independent in situ data set. Furthermore, the estimates are reliable within a factor of 1.9 (95% confidence interval). Comparisons also show that the Kd(490) derived with the new algorithms are well correlated with the in situ measurements. Our results showed a good improvement in the estimation for Kd(490) using the new approaches, contrasting with existing empirical, semi-analytical and combined models. Therefore, we propose the new approaches for accurate retrieval of Kd(490) in the China seas.

© 2013 OSA

OCIS Codes
(010.7340) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Water
(010.1690) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Color
(010.0280) Atmospheric and oceanic optics : Remote sensing and sensors

ToC Category:
Atmospheric and Oceanic Optics

Original Manuscript: April 8, 2013
Revised Manuscript: June 1, 2013
Manuscript Accepted: June 7, 2013
Published: June 19, 2013

Virtual Issues
Vol. 8, Iss. 8 Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics

Zhongfeng Qiu, Tingting Wu, and Yuanyuan Su, "Retrieval of diffuse attenuation coefficient in the China seas from surface reflectance," Opt. Express 21, 15287-15297 (2013)

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