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8 September 2015 Operational Land Imager relative radiometric calibration
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Abstract
The Operational Land Imager (OLI), on board the Landsat-8 satellite, is a pushbroom sensor with nearly 7000 detectors per band, divided between 14 separate modules. While rigorously characterized prior to launch, the shear number of individual detectors presents a challenge to maintaining the on-orbit relative calibration, such that stripes, bands and other artifacts are minimized in the final image products.

On-orbit relative calibration of the OLI is primarily monitored and corrected by observing an on-board primary solar diffuser panel. The panel is the most uniform target available to the OLI, though as observed but the OLI, it has a slope across the field of view due to view angle effects. Just after launch, parameters were derived using the solar diffuser data, to correct for the angular effects across the 14 modules. The residual discontinuities between arrays and the detector-to-detector uniformity continue to be monitored on a weekly basis.

The observed variations in the responses to the diffuser panel since launch are thought to be due to real instrument changes. Since launch, the Coastal/Aerosol (CA) and Blue bands have shown the most variation in relative calibration of the VNIR bands, with as much as 0.14% change (3-sigma) between consecutive relative gain estimates. The other VNIR bands (Green, Red and NIR) initially had detectors showing a slow drift of about 0.2% per year, though this stopped after an instrument power cycle about seven months after launch. The SWIR bands also exhibit variability between collects (0.11% 3-sigma) but the larger changes have been where individual detectors’ responses change suddenly by as much as 1.5%.

The mechanisms behind these changes are not well understood but in order to minimize impact to the users, the OLI relative calibration is updated on a quarterly basis in order to capture changes over time.
© (2015) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Julia A. Barsi and Brian L. Markham "Operational Land Imager relative radiometric calibration", Proc. SPIE 9607, Earth Observing Systems XX, 96070O (8 September 2015); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2188555
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