Abstract

We present a robust and computationally efficient method for retrieving aerosol optical depth (AOD) from top-of-atmosphere ATSR-2 (Along-Track Scanning Radiometer) and AATSR (Advanced ATSR) reflectance data that is formulated to allow retrieval of the AOD from the 11 year archive of (A)ATSR data on the global scale. The approach uses a physical model of light scattering that requires no a priori information on the land surface. Computational efficiency is achieved by using precalculated lookup tables (LUTs) for the numerical inversion of a radiative-transfer model of the atmosphere. Estimates of AOD retrieved by the LUT approach are tested on AATSR data for a range of global land surfaces and are shown to be highly correlated with sunphotometer measurements of the AOD at 550  nm. (Pearson's correlation coefficient r2 is 0.71.)

© 2006 Optical Society of America

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