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Appl Opt. 1999 Jan 20;38(3):495-504.

Satellite retrieval of inherent optical properties by inversion of an oceanic radiance model: a preliminary algorithm.

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  • 1NASA, Wallops Flight Facility, Building N159, Wallops Island, Virginia 23337, USA.


A previously published radiance model inversion theory has been field tested by using airborne water-leaving radiances to retrieve the chromophoric dissolved organic matter (CDOM) and detritus absorption coefficient, the phytoplankton absorption coefficient, and the total backscattering coefficient. The radiance model inversion theory was tested for potential satellite use by comparing two of the retrieved inherent optical properties with concurrent airborne laser-derived truth data. It was found that (1) matrix inversion of water-leaving radiances is well conditioned even in the presence of instrument-induced noise, (2) retrieved CDOM and detritus and phytoplankton absorption coefficients are both in reasonable agreement with absorption coefficients derived from airborne laser-induced fluorescence spectral emissions, (3) the total backscattering retrieval magnitude and variability are consistent with expected values for the Middle Atlantic Bight, and (4) the algorithm performs reasonably well in Sargasso Sea, Gulf Stream, slope, and shelf waters but is less consistent in coastal waters.

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