Summary Results from:

Multi-angle implementation of atmospheric correction for MODIS (MAIAC): 3. Atmospheric correction
As they relate to the validation of MOD13

Authors: Alexei Lyapustin, Yujie Wang, Istvan Laszlo, Thomas Hilker, Forrest G Hall, Piers J. Sellers, Compton J. Tucker, and Sergey V. Korkin.

Source: Remote Sensing of Environment 127 (2012): 385-393

Link to: Access Publication


This paper describes the atmospheric correction (AC) component of the Multi-Angle Implementation of Atmospheric Correction algorithm (MAIAC) which introduces a new way to compute parameters of the Ross-Thick Li-Sparse (RTLS) Bi-directional reflectance distribution function (BRDF), spectral surface albedo and bidirectional reflectance factors (BRF) from satellite measurements obtained by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS). MAIAC uses a time series and spatial analysis for cloud detection, aerosol retrievals and atmospheric correction. It implements a moving window of up to 16 days of MODIS data gridded to 1 km resolution in a selected projection. The RTLS parameters are computed directly by fitting the cloud-free MODIS top of atmosphere (TOA) reflectance data stored in the processing queue. The RTLS retrieval is applied when the land surface is stable or changes slowly. In case of rapid or large magnitude change (as for instance caused by disturbance), MAIAC follows the MODIS operational BRDF/albedo algorithm and uses a scaling approach where the BRDF shape is assumed stable but its magnitude is adjusted based on the latest single measurement. To assess the stability of the surface, MAIAC features a change detection algorithm which analyzes relative change of reflectance in the Red and NIR bands during the accumulation period. To adjust for the reflectance variability with the sun-observer geometry and allow comparison among different days (view geometries), the BRFs are normalized to the fixed view geometry using the RTLS model. An empirical analysis of MODIS data suggests that the RTLS inversion remains robust when the relative change of geometry-normalized reflectance stays below 15%. This first of two papers introduces the algorithm, a second, companion paper illustrates its potential by analyzing MODIS data over a tropical rainforest and assessing errors and uncertainties of MAIAC compared to conventional MODIS products.