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An assessment of Landsat-8 atmospheric correction schemes and remote sensing reflectance products in coral reefs and coastal turbid waters

Wei, Jianwei, Lee, Zhongping, Garcia, Rodrigo, Zoffoli, Laura, Armstrong, Roy A., Shang, Zhehai, Sheldon, Patrick, Chen, Robert F.
Remote sensing of environment 2018 v.215 pp. 18-32
Landsat, aquatic environment, coral reefs, monitoring, reflectance, remote sensing
The Operational Land Imager (OLI) onboard Landsat-8 satellite can provide remote sensing reflectance (Rrs) of aquatic environments with high spatial resolution (30 m), allowing for benthic habitat mapping and monitoring of bathymetry and water column optical properties. To facilitate these applications, accurate sensor-derived Rrs is required. In this study, we assess atmospheric correction schemes, including NASA's NIR-SWIR approach, Acolite's NIR and SWIR approaches and the cloud-shadow approach. We provide the first comprehensive evaluation for Landsat-8 Rrs retrievals in optically shallow coral reefs, along with an investigation of Landsat-8 Rrs products in a temperate turbid embayment. The obtained Landsat-8 Rrs data products are evaluated with concurrent in situ hyperspectral Rrs measurements. Our analyses show that the NASA and the cloud-shadow approaches generated reliable Rrs products across shallow coral reefs and optically deep waters. This evaluation suggests that high quality Rrs products are achievable from the Landsat-8 satellite in optically shallow environments, which supports further application of Landsat-8 type measurements for coral reef studies.