Airborne Lunar Spectral Irradiance (air-LUSI) Missioni Capability Demonstration

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Citation of Original Publication

Kevin Turpie et al., Airborne Lunar Spectral Irradiance (air-LUSI) Missioni Capability Demonstration, CALCON (2020),


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This work was written as part of one of the author's official duties as an Employee of the United States Government and is therefore a work of the United States Government. In accordance with 17 U.S.C. 105, no copyright protection is available for such works under U.S. Law.



The Moon is a very useful calibration target for Earth-observing sensors in orbit because its surface is radiometrically stable and it has a radiant flux comparable to Earth scenes. To predict the lunar irradiance given an illumination and viewing geometry, the United States Geological Survey (USGS) has developed the Robotic Lunar Observatory (ROLO) Model of exo-atmospheric lunar spectral irradiance. The USGS ROLO model represents the current most precise knowledge of lunar spectral irradiance and is used frequently as a relative calibration standard by space-borne Earth-observing sensors. However, instrument calibration teams have expressed the need for an absolute lunar reference with higher accuracy.