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Analytical parameterization of canopy directional emissivity and directional radiance in the thermal infrared. Application on the retrieval of soil and foliage temperatures using two directional measurements

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Abstract. This work is aimed at deriving canopy component (soil and foliage) temperatures from remote sensing measurements. A simulation study above sparse, partial and dense vegetation canopies has been performed to improve the knowledge of the behaviour of the composite radiative temperature and emissivity. Canopy structural parameters have been introduced in the analytical parameterization of the directional canopy emissivity and directional canopy radiance:namely, the leaf area index (LAI), directional gap fraction and angular cavity effect coefficient. The parameterization has been physically defined allowing its extension to a wide range of Leaf Inclination Distribution Functions (LIDF). When single values are used as leaves and soil temperatures, they prove to be retrieved with insignificant errors from two directional measurements of the canopy radiance (namely at 0 and 55 from nadir), provided that the canopy structure parameters are known. A sensitivity study to the different parameters shows the great importance of the accuracy on LAI estimation (an accuracy of 10 per cent is required to retrieve the leaves temperature with an accuracy better than 0.5 degK, the same requirement being 5 per cent for the retrieval of soil temperature). The radiometric noise is important too, but its effects may be limited by using very different angles for the measurements: for 0 and 55 , the effect of a Gaussian noise (NEDeltaT 0.05deg K) is lower than 0.5degK on the retrieved soil and foliage temperatures). Uncertainties on the leaf and soil emissivities (Delta epsilon 0.01) cause little errors in the retrieval (lower than 0.5degK). If the inclination dependence of the leaves temperature is considered, a 1 degK error is observed in the retrieved soil and foliage temperatures. This error is due to the fact that the effective foliage temperature varies with the view angle (a few 10 -1 deg K at 55 ), which implies errors in the inversion scheme. This effect may be corrected for by using an angular corrective term delta depending only on the off-nadir angle used.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 1997-08-01

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