Gauss–Seidel limb scattering (GSLS) radiative transfer model development in support of the Ozone Mapping and Profiler Suite (OMPS) limb profiler mission
Abstract. The Gauss–Seidel limb scattering (GSLS) radiative transfer (RT) model simulates the transfer of solar radiation through the atmosphere and is imbedded in the retrieval algorithm used to process data from the Ozone Mapping and Profiler Suite (OMPS) limb profiler (LP), which was launched on the Suomi NPP satellite in October 2011. A previous version of this model has been compared with several other limb scattering RT models in previous studies, including Siro, MCC++, CDIPI, LIMBTRAN, SASKTRAN, VECTOR, and McSCIA. To address deficiencies in the GSLS radiance calculations revealed in earlier comparisons, several recent changes have been added that improve the accuracy and flexibility of the GSLS model, including
1. improved treatment of the variation of the extinction coefficient with altitude, both within atmospheric layers and above the nominal top of the atmosphere;
2. addition of multiple-scattering source function calculations at multiple solar zenith angles along the line of sight (LOS);
3. introduction of variable surface properties along the limb LOS, with minimal effort required to add variable atmospheric properties along the LOS as well;
4. addition of the ability to model multiple aerosol types within the model atmosphere.
The model improvements 1 and 2 are verified by comparison to previously published results (using standard radiance tables whenever possible), demonstrating significant improvement in cases for which previous versions of the GSLS model performed poorly. The single-scattered radiance errors that were as high as 4% in earlier studies are now generally reduced to 0.3%, while total radiance errors generally decline from 10% to 1–3%. In all cases, the tangent height dependence of the GSLS radiance error is greatly reduced.