Abstract

Low-power, lightweight, off-the-shelf imaging spectrometers, deployed on above-water fixed platforms or on low-altitude aerial drones, have significant potential for enabling fine-scale assessment of radiometrically derived water quality properties (WQPs) in oceans, lakes, and reservoirs. In such applications, it is essential that the measured water-leaving spectral radiances be corrected for surface-reflected light, i.e., glint. However, noise and spectral characteristics of these imagers, and environmental sources of fine-scale radiometric variability such as capillary waves, complicate the glint correction problem. Despite having a low signal-to-noise ratio, a representative lightweight imaging spectrometer provided accurate radiometric estimates of chlorophyll concentration—an informative WQP—from glint-corrected hyperspectral radiances in a fixed-platform application in a coastal ocean region. Optimal glint correction was provided by a spectral optimization algorithm, which outperformed both a hardware solution utilizing a polarizer and a subtractive algorithm incorporating the reflectance measured in the near infrared. In the same coastal region, this spectral optimization approach also provided the best glint correction for radiometric estimates of backscatter at 650 nm, a WQP indicative of suspended particle load.

© 2020 Optical Society of America

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