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Raytran: a Monte Carlo ray-tracing model to compute light scattering in three-dimensional heterogeneous media

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2 Author(s)
Y. M. Govaerts ; Eumetsat, Darmstadt, Germany ; M. M. Verstraete

A model of radiation transfer in three-dimensional (3D) heterogeneous media is designed and evaluated. This model implements state-of-the-art Monte Carlo ray-tracing techniques and is dedicated to the study of light propagation in terrestrial environments. It is designed as a virtual laboratory, where scenes of arbitrary complexity can be described explicitly and where the relevant radiative processes can be represented in great detail, at spatial scales relevant to simulate actual measurements. The approach capitalizes on the existing understanding of the elementary radiative processes and recognizes that the major difficulty in accurately describing the radiation field after its interaction with a typical terrestrial scene results from the complexity of the structure and the diversity of the properties of the elements of the scene. The output of the model can be customized to address various scientific investigations, including the determination of absorption profiles or of light-scattering distributions. The performance of the model is evaluated through detailed comparisons with laboratory measurements of an artificial target as well as with other established reflectance models for plant canopies

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing  (Volume:36 ,  Issue: 2 )