Applying SPOT data to estimate the aerosol optical depth and air quality

Gin Rong Liu, A. J. Chen, Tang Huang Lin, Tsung Hua Kuo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


The improvement in the structure function method for retrieving aerosol optical depth (AOD) with SPOT HRV data and its application in air quality monitoring are highlighted in this paper. Generally speaking, estimation of the aerosol optical depth will be affected by the temporal change of surface canopy, observation geometry and terrain effect when applying the contrast reduction method to the multi-temporal satellite image set. In order to reduce the errors induced by such effects, the single-directional structure function is replaced by the multi-directional mode, which can describe the real characteristics of the surface structure more completely. Comparison of the results with in-site observations show a significant improvement in the accuracy of the retrieved AOD. Furthermore, due to the linear relationship between aerosol optical depth and turbidity coefficient, satellite images can be employed for monitoring air quality. Application of the method is demonstrated with a case study situated around the northern Taiwan area.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3-9
Number of pages7
JournalEnvironmental Modelling and Software
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2002


  • Aerosol optical depth
  • Atmospheric turbidity
  • Structure function


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