Abstract

An original methodology to account for aerosol and cirrus cloud contributions to reflected sunlight is described. This method can be applied to the problem of retrieving greenhouse gases from satellite-observed data and is based on the equivalence theorem with further parameterization of the photon path-length probability density function (PPDF). Monte Carlo simulation was used to validate this parameterization for a vertically nonhomogeneous atmosphere including an aerosol layer and cirrus clouds. Initial approximation suggests that the PPDF depends on four parameters that can be interpreted as the effective cloud height, cloud relative reflectance, and two additional factors to account for photon path-length distribution under the cloud. We demonstrate that these parameters can be efficiently retrieved from the nadir radiance measured in the oxygen A-band and from the H2O-saturated area of the CO2 2.0μm spectral band.

© 2007 Optical Society of America

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