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Ocean Color Remote Sensing Using Polarization Properties of Reflected SunlightThe effects of the atmosphere and surface on sunlight backscattered to space by the ocean may be substantially reduced by using the unpolarized component of reflectance instead of total reflectance. At 450 nm, a wavelength of interest in ocean color remote sensing, and for typical conditions, 45% of the unpolarized reflectance may originate from the water body instead of 20% of the total reflectance, which represents a gain of a factor 2.2 in useful signal for water composition retrieval. The best viewing geometries are adjacent to the glitter region; they correspond to scattering angles around 100 deg, but they may change slightly depending on the polarization characteristics of the aerosols. As aerosol optical thickness increases, the atmosphere becomes less efficient at polarizing sunlight, and the enhancement of the water body contribution to unpolarized reflectance is reduced. Since the perturbing effects are smaller on unpolarized reflectance, at least for some viewing geometries, they may be more easily corrected, leading to a more accurate water-leaving signal and, therefore, more accurate estimates of phytoplankton pigment concentration.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
R. Frouin
(Scripps Institution of Oceanography La Jolla, California, United States)
E. Pouliquen
(Scripps Institution of Oceanography La Jolla, California, United States)
F.-M. Breon
(Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l'Environnement Gif-sur-Yvette, France)
Date Acquired
August 16, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1994
Publication Information
Publication: Proceedings of 6th International Symposium on Physical Measurements and Signatures in Remote Sensing
Subject Category
Earth Resources And Remote Sensing
Report/Patent Number
Meeting Information
Sixth International Symposium (Val d''lsere)
Accession Number
Funding Number(s)
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.
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