Abstract

An analytic model is developed for the mean and clutter infrared radiance emitted from the ocean surface near the horizon and in the presence of solar glint. The model is based on the identification of a characteristic facet dimension over which the ocean surface is essentially flat. Fluctuations in the facet orientation generated by the water wave motion are modeled by a parameterized wave height power spectral density that provides the two orthogonal wave slope variances. The mean and root-mean-square facet radiances are calculated with Gaussian probability-density functions for the wave slopes. One can determine the number of facets within the field of view of a single detector by estimating the exposed ocean area and dividing by the facet area. This estimation takes into account shadowing effects of the swell wave, the swell wavelength, and the transverse detector field of view. The number of exposed facets together with the central-limit theorem permits computation of the radiance clutter as a function of look-down angle below the horizon. Vertical radiance profiles, parameterized by the azimuthal offset from the solar position, are calculated over a sensor look-down angle range of ±50 mrad about the horizon. The results of this analysis are compared with infrared radiance measurements of the ocean surface near the horizon and in the presence of solar glint. Agreement between the measured and calculated values of the mean and clutter radiances is good.

© 1994 Optical Society of America

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