A physical algorithm is developed to solve the radiative transfer problem in the solar reflective spectral domain. This new code, Advanced Modeling of the Atmospheric Radiative Transfer for Inhomogeneous Surfaces (AMARTIS), takes into account the relief, the spatial heterogeneity, and the bidirectional reflectances of ground surfaces. The resolution method consists of first identifying the irradiance and radiance components at ground and sensor levels and then modeling these components separately, the rationale being to find the optimal trade off between accuracy and computation times. The validity of the various assumptions introduced in the AMARTIS model are checked through comparisons with a reference Monte Carlo radiative transfer code for various ground scenes: flat ground with two surface types, a linear sand dune landscape, and an extreme mountainous configuration. The results show a divergence of less than 2% between the AMARTIS code and the Monte Carlo reference code for the total signals received at satellite level. In particular, it is demonstrated that the environmental and topographic effects are properly assessed by the AMARTIS model even for situations in which the effects become dominant.
© 2000 Optical Society of AmericaPDF Article