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Proceedings Paper

Polarization in remote sensing
Author(s): Walter G. Egan
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Paper Abstract

A review of the experimental and theoretical aspects of optical polarization is presented with definitions of the observed polarization characteristics and relationship to the Stokes parameters. A typical terrestrial soil polarization curve is characterized and related to the current theoretical knowledge. This polarization relationship is extended to cover planetary surfaces, such as the Moon, and Mars and terrestrial surfaces composed of farm areas and water surfaces. Instrumentation for imaging and non-imaging polarimetry are described including the use of focal plane arrays. Recent Space Shuttle polarimetric observations of the region around the Island of Hawaii and New Madrid, Missouri are described, as well as concurrent cloud and haze observations. Polarization is a sensitive indicator of cloud particle size distributions, soil texture, farm crops, sea state and atmospheric aerosols and haze. Cloud particle size distributions are uniquely characterized by polarization, and this cannot be achieved with photometry. An extensive bibliography of polarization in remote sensing is appended.

Paper Details

Date Published: 8 December 1992
PDF: 47 pages
Proc. SPIE 1747, Polarization and Remote Sensing, (8 December 1992);
Show Author Affiliations
Walter G. Egan, CUNY/York College (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1747:
Polarization and Remote Sensing
Walter G. Egan, Editor(s)

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