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1 August 1990 Long-path transmissometer for measuring ambient atmospheric extinction
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Proceedings Volume 1269, Environment and Pollution Measurement Sensors and Systems; (1990)
Event: The International Congress on Optical Science and Engineering, 1990, The Hague, Netherlands
With the passage of the 1977 Clean Air Act Amendments, the United States Congress emphasized visibility protection for the pristine areas of the country as a major national goal. Federal programs were implemented to estimate existing levels of atmospheric extinction. Until recently, this has been accomplished primarily by the use of various techniques to measure apparent target/horizon sky contrast. While the ability of these methods to accurately determine contrast is well proven, the estimation of extinction using the Koschmieder relationship is usually compromised by theoretical assumptions that are typically not met in practice. To address this problem, the United States National Park Service has supported the development, testing, and deployment of an instrument that accurately and reliably measures the transmission of an ambient atmospheric optical path. The average atmospheric extinction coefficient of the path can be calculated directly from this measurement. This transmissometer consists of a constant output light source transmitter and a computer-controlled photometer receiver. The irradiance at visible wavelengths from the transmitter can be measured to a high degree of accuracy both day and night over path lengths of 0.5 to 30km. A complete description of the transmissometer will be presented. Atmospheric optical considerations will be combined with design parameters and experimental data to confirm the ability of this instrument to make an accurate, precise, and reliable extinction measurement.
© (1990) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
John Victor Molenar, Gerald C. Persha, and William C. Malm "Long-path transmissometer for measuring ambient atmospheric extinction", Proc. SPIE 1269, Environment and Pollution Measurement Sensors and Systems, (1 August 1990);

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