Abstract

We present an analysis of a number of different approximations for the plane transmittance Tp and diffuse attenuation coefficient Kd of a semi-infinite, unbounded, plane-parallel, and optically homogeneous layer. The maximally wide optical conditions (from the full absorption to the full scattering and from the fully forward to the fully backward scattering) were considered. The approximations were analyzed from the point of view of their physical limitations and closeness to the numerical solution of the radiative transfer equation for the plane transmittance. The main criterion for inclusion of the models for analysis was the possibility of practical use, i.e., approximations were well parameterized and included only easily measured or estimated parameters. A detailed analysis of errors for different Tp and Kd models showed that the two-stream radiative transfer Ben-David model yields the best results over all optical conditions and depths. However, the quasi-single-scattering and polynomial Gordon’s approximations proved to be the best for the depths close to zero.

© 2014 Optical Society of America

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