Abstract

We present a design for a flow-through integrating cavity absorption meter. This instrument, in principle, is capable of measuring the spectral optical absorption coefficient of natural waters in situ independently of scattering effects. Monte Carlo simulations are used to determine the design parameters and evaluate instrument performance. We investigate both detector response and the distribution of radiant energy inside the instrument and present empirical equations describing these quantities as a function of the absorption coefficient. The effects of changing the instrument geometry are illustrated. Finally, we discuss the effects of scattering on the instrument performance and verify that they are negligible for natural waters.

© 2006 Optical Society of America

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