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Remote Sens. 2011, 3(7), 1492-1515; doi:10.3390/rs3071492

Sensitivity of Depth-Integrated Satellite Lidar to Subaqueous Scattering

1 Universities Space Research Association, Goddard Earth Sciences Technology and Research (GESTAR), Goddard Space Flight Center, Code 614.1, Greenbelt, MD 20771, USA 2 Hydrological Sciences Branch, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Code 614.3, Greenbelt, MD 20771, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 13 May 2011 / Revised: 26 June 2011 / Accepted: 29 June 2011 / Published: 11 July 2011
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A method is presented for estimating subaqueous integrated backscatter using near-nadir viewing satellite lidar. The algorithm takes into account specular reflection of laser light, laser scattering by wind-generated foam as well as sun glint and solar scattering from foam. The formulation is insensitive to the estimate of wind speed but sensitive to the estimate of transmittance used in the atmospheric correction. As a case study, CALIOP data over Tampa Bay were compared to MODIS 645 nm remote sensing reflectance, which previously has been shown to be nearly linearly related to turbidity. The results indicate good correlation on nearly all CALIOP cloud-free dates during the period 2006 through 2007, particularly those with relatively high atmospheric transmittance. The correlation decreases when data are composited over all dates but is still statistically significant, a possible indication of variability in the biogeochemical composition in the water. Overall, the favorable results show promise for the application of satellite lidar integrated backscatter in providing information about subsurface backscatter properties, which can be extracted using appropriate models.
Keywords: lidar; CALIOP; CALIPSO; backscattering; turbidity; water quality; Tampa Bay lidar; CALIOP; CALIPSO; backscattering; turbidity; water quality; Tampa Bay
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Barton, J.S.; Jasinski, M.F. Sensitivity of Depth-Integrated Satellite Lidar to Subaqueous Scattering. Remote Sens. 2011, 3, 1492-1515.

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