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Atmospheric correction algorithm for MERIS above case-2 waters

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The development and validation of an atmospheric correction algorithm designed for the Medium Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MERIS) with special emphasis on case-2 waters is described. The algorithm is based on inverse modelling of radiative transfer (RT) calculations using artificial neural network (ANN) techniques. The presented correction scheme is implemented as a direct inversion of spectral top-of-atmosphere (TOA) radiances into spectral remote sensing reflectances at the bottom-of-atmosphere (BOA), with additional output of the aerosol optical thickness (AOT) at four wavelengths for validation purposes. The inversion algorithm was applied to 13 MERIS Level1b data tracks of 2002-2003, covering the optically complex waters of the North and Baltic Sea region. A validation of the retrieved AOTs was performed with coincident in situ automatic sun-sky scanning radiometer measurements of the Aerosol Robotic Network (AERONET) from Helgoland Island located in the German Bight. The accuracy of the derived reflectances was validated with concurrent ship-borne reflectance measurements of the SIMBADA hand-held field radiometer. Compared to the MERIS Level2 standard reflectance product generated by the processor versions 3.55, 4.06 and 6.3, the results of the proposed algorithm show a significant improvement in accuracy, especially in the blue part of the spectrum, where the MERIS Level2 reflectances result in errors up to 122% compared to only 19% with the proposed algorithm. The overall mean errors within the spectral range of 412.5-708.75 nm are calculated to be 46.2% and 18.9% for the MERIS Level2 product and the presented algorithm, respectively.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Free University Berlin, Institute for Space Sciences, Berlin, Germany 2: CIMEL Electronique, Paris, France,GKSS Research Centre, Institute for Coastal Research, Geesthacht, Germany 3: GKSS Research Centre, Institute for Coastal Research, Geesthacht, Germany

Publication date: 01 January 2007

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