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Appl Opt. 2009 Jun 10;48(17):3177-83.

Applying narrowband remote-sensing reflectance models to wideband data.

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  • 1Northern Gulf Institute, Mississippi State University, Stennis Space Center, Mississippi 39529, USA.


Remote sensing of coastal and inland waters requires sensors to have a high spatial resolution to cover the spatial variation of biogeochemical properties in fine scales. High spatial-resolution sensors, however, are usually equipped with spectral bands that are wide in bandwidth (50 nm or wider). In this study, based on numerical simulations of hyperspectral remote-sensing reflectance of optically-deep waters, and using Landsat band specifics as an example, the impact of a wide spectral channel on remote sensing is analyzed. It is found that simple adoption of a narrowband model may result in >20% underestimation in calculated remote-sensing reflectance, and inversely may result in >20% overestimation in inverted absorption coefficients even under perfect conditions, although smaller (approximately 5%) uncertainties are found for higher absorbing waters. These results provide a cautious note, but also a justification for turbid coastal waters, on applying narrowband models to wideband data.

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