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Remote Sens. 2017, 9(4), 379; doi:10.3390/rs9040379

Optical Backscattering Measured by Airborne Lidar and Underwater Glider

1
Earth System Research Laboratory, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, 325 Broadway, Boulder, CO 80305, USA
2
Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES), University of Colorado and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, 325 Broadway, Boulder, CO 80305, USA
3
College of Marine Science, University of South Florida, 140 7th Avenue South, Saint Petersburg, FL 33701, USA
4
MOTE Marine Laboratory & Aquarium, 1600 Ken Thompson Parkway, Sarasota, FL 34236, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Raphael M. Kudela and Prasad S. Thenkabail
Received: 13 December 2016 / Revised: 5 April 2017 / Accepted: 13 April 2017 / Published: 18 April 2017
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Abstract

The optical backscattering from particles in the ocean is an important quantity that has been measured by remote sensing techniques and in situ instruments. In this paper, we compare estimates of this quantity from airborne lidar with those from an in situ instrument on an underwater glider. Both of these technologies allow much denser sampling of backscatter profiles than traditional ship surveys. We found a moderate correlation (R = 0.28, p < 10−5), with differences that are partially explained by spatial and temporal sampling mismatches, variability in particle composition, and lidar retrieval errors. The data suggest that there are two different regimes with different scattering properties. For backscattering coefficients below about 0.001 m−1, the lidar values were generally greater than the glider values. For larger values, the lidar was generally lower than the glider. Overall, the results are promising and suggest that airborne lidar and gliders provide comparable and complementary information on optical particulate backscattering. View Full-Text
Keywords: ocean optics; lidar; underwater glider; ocean remote sensing ocean optics; lidar; underwater glider; ocean remote sensing
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Churnside, J.H.; Marchbanks, R.D.; Lembke, C.; Beckler, J. Optical Backscattering Measured by Airborne Lidar and Underwater Glider. Remote Sens. 2017, 9, 379.

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