PRELIMINARY SENSITIVITY STUDY OF AEROSOL LAYER HEIGHT FROM SYNTHETIC MULTIANGLE POLARIMETRIC REMOTE SENSING MEASUREMENTS
Many previous studies have shown that multiangle, multispectral polarimetric remote sensing can provide valuable information on aerosol microphysical and optical properties, in which the aerosol layer height (ALH) is an important parameter but with less studies, especially in the near-ultraviolet (near-UV) and visible (VIS) wavelength bands. Based on the optimal estimation (OE) theory and information content analysis method, we focus on the sensitivity study of ALH with the synthetic data in the near-UV and VIS wavelength in the range of 410–865 nm, and further to assess the capability of multiangle intensity and polarization measurements for the retrieval of ALH. Unified Linearized Vector Radiative Transfer Model (UNL-VRTM) has been used as the forward model to simulate the intensity and polarized radiance at the top of atmosphere (TOA), as well as the Jacobians of TOA results with respective to corresponding parameters. The degree of freedom for signal (DFS) and a posteriori error are introduced to quantity the information content of ALH from the intensity and polarization measurements, respectively. By assuming the surface type, aerosol model, aerosol loads, prior errors and observation geometries, the sensitivity of ALH has been preliminarily investigated. The sensitivity study results show that the near-UV and polarization measurements are the important source of information content for the aerosol height retrieval in satellite remote sensing.