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Automated stereo retrieval of smoke plume injection heights and retrieval of smoke plume masks from AATSR and their assessment with CALIPSO and MISR

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Daniel Neil Fisher, Jan-Peter Muller, Vladimir N. Yershov

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1249-1258
Issue number2
PublishedFeb 2014


King's Authors


The longevity and dispersion of smoke and associated chemical constituents released from wildfire events are dependent on several factors, crucially including the height at which the smoke is injected into the atmosphere. The aim here is to provide improved emission data for the initialization of chemical transport models in order to better predict aerosol and trace gas dispersion following injection into the free atmosphere. A new stereo-matching algorithm, named M6, which can effectively resolve smoke plume injection heights (SPIH), is presented here. M6 is extensively validated against two alternative spaceborne earth observation SPIH data sources and demonstrates good agreement. Further, due to the spectral and dual-view configuration of the Advanced Along-Track Scanning Radiometer imaging system, it is possible to automatically differentiate smoke from other atmospheric features effectively-a feat, which currently no other algorithm can achieve. Additionally, as the M6 algorithm shares a heritage with the other M-series matchers, it is here compared against one of its predecessors, M4, which, for the determination of SPIH, M6 is shown to substantially outperform.

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