Surface characteristics for the alkali flats and dunes regions at white sands missile range, New Mexico

  • Wheeler R
  • LeCroy S
  • Whitlock C
 et al. 
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Abstract

Two regions at White Sands Missile Range with different surface reflectance characteristics were studied from November 1988 through December 1991. Continuous 6-min measurements of surface albedo on the alkali flats were used to produce a clear-sky surface climatology for the period. Based on the flats measurements, estimates for a dunes albedo were made using calibrated satellite data. In addition to the surface albedo history, sample bidirectional reflectance characteristics in terms of anisotropic factors for the alkali flats region are also presented. Results show that the flats region is non-Lambertian characterized by large anisotropic factors at high solar and viewing zenith angles. The flat's albedo is highly influenced by surface moisture conditions. Reflectance properties of the dunes are complicated by dune shadows, surface irregularities, seasonal vegetative coverage, and soil moisture. © 1994.

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Authors

  • Robert J. Wheeler

  • Stuart R. LeCroy

  • Charles H. Whitlock

  • Gerald C. Purgold

  • Jeffery S. Swanson

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