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Satellites are an excellent experimental tool for characterising and monitoring the properties of continental surfaces at adequate temporal and spatial scales. They can thus contribute greatly to the analysis of climatic phenomena that disturb these surface properties. Whether to validate the results of climatic models, to specify their initial conditions at the lower limit, or to extract quantitative physical information from satellite data, physical models representing the transfer of radiation to the surface are required. A new analytical model to express bidirectional reflectance on surfaces is presented. Surfaces are considered as porous environments made up of optically uniform elements. Particular emphasis is given to the effects of the orientation of the elements and to their relative arrangement in their environment. The model has been inverted and validated in the laboratory, on the ground, and from the air. The model offers new perspectives on the analysis and interpretation of satellite data, and enables limiting conditions to be specified for continents in climatic models.

Additional information

Authors: PINTY B, Laboratoire d'Etudes et de Recherches en Télédétection Spatiale, Toulouse (FR);VERSTRAETE M M, University of Michigan, AOSS (US)
Bibliographic Reference: Article: Advances in Space Research, Vol. 11 (1991) No. 3, pp. 169-172
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