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18 April 2003 Atmospheric correction for low-altitude airplane measurements
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Images from the Earth surface taken from satellites or airplanes need atmospheric correction including angle and aerosol effects to derive accurate surface properties. For low-flying airplanes which operates in heights between 1 and 2 km one has to distinguish between the atmosphere above and below the sensor. A critical task within the atmospheric correction is the correct consideration of the vertical distribution of aerosol particles. The atmospheric boundary layer can reach heights up to 3 km during a summer day in central Europe and it can change as much as 100% during a day. Long range transport of particles occurs normally in heights between 1 and 5 km. Both lead often to a considerable amount of particles above the airplane. It will be demonstrated that the effect of an inadequate aerosol vertical profile used within the atmospheric correction scheme on the derived surface reflectances is height dependent and wavelength dependent with much larger influences in the UV than in the long NIR wavelength range both due to decreasing Rayleigh and aerosol scatttering and increasing surface reflectance with increasing wavelength. The wavelength dependency leads to different NDVI and LAI indices. Furthermore the effect is modified by the intensity of the path radiance in relation to the surface reflected radiance with leads to a dependency on solar zenith angle and sensor zenith angle.
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Frank Wagner and Peter Koepke "Atmospheric correction for low-altitude airplane measurements", Proc. SPIE 4882, Remote Sensing of Clouds and the Atmosphere VII, (18 April 2003);

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