We introduced a two-dimensional radiative transfer model for aerosols in the thermal infrared [Appl. Opt. 45, 6860–6875 (2006)]. In that paper we superimposed two orthogonal plane-parallel layers to compute the radiance due to a two-dimensional (2D) rectangular aerosol cloud. In this paper we revisit the model and correct an error in the interaction of the two layers. We derive new expressions relating to the signal content of the radiance from an aerosol cloud based on the concept of five directional thermal contrasts: four for the 2D diffuse radiance and one for direct radiance along the line of sight. The new expressions give additional insight on the radiative transfer processes within the cloud. Simulations for Bacillus subtilis var. niger (BG) bioaerosol and dustlike kaolin aerosol clouds are compared and contrasted for two geometries: an airborne sensor looking down and a ground-based sensor looking up. Simulation results suggest that aerosol cloud detection from an airborne platform may be more challenging than for a ground-based sensor and that the detection of an aerosol cloud in emission mode (negative direct thermal contrast) is not the same as the detection of an aerosol cloud in absorption mode (positive direct thermal contrast).
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ErrataAvishai Ben-David, Charles E. Davidson, and Janon F. Embury, "Radiative transfer model for aerosols at infrared wavelengths for passive remote sensing applications: revisited--erratum," Appl. Opt. 48, 903-903 (2009)