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Some New Lidar Equations for Laser Pulses Scattered Back from Optically Thick Media Such as Clouds, Dense Aerosol Plumes, Sea Ice, Snow, and Turbid Coastal WatersI survey the theoretical foundations of the slowly-but-surely emerging field of multiple scattering lidar, which has already found applications in atmospheric and cryospheric optics that I also discuss. In multiple scattering lidar, returned pulses are stretched far beyond recognition, and there is no longer a one-to-one connection between range and return-trip timing. Moreover, one can exploit the radial profile of the diffuse radiance field excited by the laser source that, by its very nature, is highly concentrated in space and collimated in direction. One needs, however, a new class of lidar equations to explore this new phenomenology. A very useful set is derived from radiative diffusion theory, which is found at the opposite asymptotic limit of radiative transfer theory than the conventional (single-scattering) limit used to derive the standard lidar equation. In particular, one can use it to show that, even if the simple time-of-flight-to-range connection is irretrievably lost, multiply-scattered lidar light can be used to restore a unique profiling capability with coarser resolution but much deeper penetration into a wide variety of optical thick media in nature. Several new applications are proposed, including a laser bathymetry technique that should work for highly turbid coastal waters.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
External Source(s)
Davis, Anthony B.
(Jet Propulsion Lab., California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Date Acquired
May 13, 2015
Publication Date
August 25, 2013
Subject Category
Earth Resources And Remote Sensing
Lasers And Masers
Communications And Radar
Meeting Information
Meeting: SPIE Optics and Photonics
Location: San Diego, CA
Country: United States
Start Date: August 25, 2013
End Date: August 29, 2013
Sponsors: International Society for Optical Engineering
Distribution Limits
turbid water
aerosol plumes
Green functions
laser bathymetry
sea ice
pulse stretching
multiple scattering

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