Abstract

We propose a technique for retrieving seawater-backscattering profiles that is based on the joint use of elastic and Raman lidar returns. We suggest using two lidar channels: the Raman channel and the elastic channel with a light frequency equal to a half-sum of initial and Raman-shifted frequencies of the Raman channel. These specific wavelengths provide the same attenuation laws for elastic and Raman signals if absorption and scattering spectra can be approximated by a power law. In particular, seawater supplies such a possibility in the region of 400–500 nm if extremely bioproductive waters are not considered and the chlorophyll absorption peak at 440 nm does not come out of the background of dissolved organic matter absorption. With these specific initial wavelengths, the elastic and Raman lidar returns differ only in the backscattering coefficients. Because the Raman-backscattering coefficient is constant along the profile, the (elastic-to-Raman) ratio of these lidar returns directly produces the profile of the elastic-backscattering coefficient. This technique stays valid even under multiple-scattering conditions, which is of great importance for seawater sounding.

© 2004 Optical Society of America

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