Abstract

The effects of oceanic whitecaps on ocean-color imagery are simulated and inserted into the proposed Sea-Viewing Wide-Field-of-View Sensor (SeaWiFS) atmospheric-correction algorithm to understand its tolerance to error in the estimated whitecap contribution. The results suggest that for wind speeds ≲ 10–12 m/s, present models that relate whitecap reflectance to wind speed are sufficiently accurate to meet the SeaWiFS accuracy goal for retrieval of the water-leaving radiance in the blue, when the aerosol scattering is weakly dependent on wavelength. In contrast, when the aerosol scattering has a strong spectral signature, the retrievals will meet the goal only when the whitecap reflectance is underestimated.

© 1994 Optical Society of America

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