Articles | Volume 6, issue 10
Research article
18 Oct 2013
Research article |  | 18 Oct 2013

Retrieval of aerosol parameters from the oxygen A band in the presence of chlorophyll fluorescence

A. F. J. Sanders and J. F. de Haan

Abstract. We have investigated the precision of retrieved aerosol parameters for a generic aerosol retrieval algorithm over vegetated land using the O2 A band. Chlorophyll fluorescence is taken into account in the forward model. Fluorescence emissions are modeled as isotropic contributions to the upwelling radiance field at the surface and they are retrieved along with aerosol parameters. Precision is calculated by propagating measurement errors and a priori errors, including model parameter errors, using the forward model's derivatives. Measurement errors consist of noise and calibration errors. The model parameter errors considered are related to the single scattering albedo, surface pressure and temperature profile. We assume that measurement noise is dominated by shot noise; thus, results apply to grating spectrometers in particular. We describe precision for various atmospheric states, observation geometries and spectral resolutions of the instrument in a number of retrieval simulations. These precision levels can be compared with user requirements. A comparison of precision estimates with the literature and an analysis of the dependence on the a priori error in the fluorescence emission indicate that aerosol parameters can be retrieved in the presence of chlorophyll fluorescence: if fluorescence is present, fluorescence emissions should be included in the state vector to avoid biases in retrieved aerosol parameters.