The directional-reflectance distributions of radiant flux from homogeneous vegetation canopies with greater than 90% ground cover are analyzed with a radiative-transfer model. The model assumes that the leaves consist of small finite planes with Lambertian properties. Four theoretical canopies with different leaf-orientation distributions were studied: erectophile, spherical, planophile, and heliotropic canopies. The directional-reflectance distributions from the model closely resemble reflectance distributions measured in the field. The physical scattering mechanisms operating in the model explain the variations observed in the reflectance distributions as a function of leaf-orientation distribution, solar zenith angle, and leaf transmittance and reflectance. The simulated reflectance distributions show unique characteristics for each canopy. The basic understanding of the physical scattering properties of the different canopy geometries gained in this study provide a basis for developing techniques to infer leaf-orientation distributions of vegetation canopies from directional remote-sensing measurements.
© 1984 Optical Society of AmericaFull Article | PDF Article