Sensitivity of the Mueller matrix to the optical and microphysical properties of cirrus clouds
Lawless, Ryan Lee
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An adding-doubling method is employed to calculate the reflected Stokes parameters for cirrus cloud layers composed of different habits and effective sizes. The elements of the Mueller matrix are determined from the reflected Stokes parameters by considering four different incident polarization states. The sensitivity of these elements is observed by comparing different ice crystal habits, effective sizes, and optical depth. The Mueller elements are strongly dependent on habit. The three habits, aggregate, bullet rosette, and plate, are observed and the M12/M11,M43/M11 and M44/M11 elements are discussed. The wavelength used is 0.532????m, which is the lidar wavelength used on the CALIPSO satellite. The linear depolarization ratio is also discussed. The method of subtracting the two depolarization ratios, is noted as another way to possibly better distinguish ice crystal habits. The sensitivity of the Mueller matrix to effective size is also observed. For three size distributions, the Mueller elements indicate no strong dependence. This may be due to the assumption of randomly oriented ice. Also, using an absorbing wavelength might provide dependence. Finally, the Mueller elements are dependent on optical depth. For a greater optical depth, the strength of reflection increases while the polarization decreases. As the optical depth increases, any peak-like features become non-existent.