Spatially resolved methane band photometry of Saturn. I. Absolute reflectivity and center-to-limb variations in the 6190-, 7250-, and 8900-Å bands

Robert A. West, Martin G Tomasko, Bradford A. Smith, Mahendra P. Wijesinghe, Lyn R. Doose, Harold J. Reitsema, Stephen M. Larson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

30 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We present spatially resolved measurements of Saturn's absolute reflectivity in methane bands at 6190, 7250, and 8900 Å and in nearby continuum regions. Images were obtained through narrow-band interference filters with a 500 × 500-pixel charge-coupled device. Band/continuum ratios were measured to high accuracy by referencing to the ring brightness in each image. Several data processing techniques enhanced the quality of the observations. These are the use of the ring symmetry to find center position and orientation, accurate subtraction of ring light, and constrained image deconvolution. Uncertainty in the continuum absolute reflectivity is ±10%. Uncertainties in band/continuum ratios are from one to several percent. The Equatorial Zone was much brighter than any other latitude in the strong 8900 band image. Northern mid-latitudes were brighter than southern mid-latitudes. The latter observation indicates fewer high-altitude aerosols in the south, a possible result of atmospheric dynamics or seasonal sublimation of NH3 crystals. The data are tabulated and presented in a form suitable for quantitative scattering model analyses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)51-64
Number of pages14
JournalIcarus
Volume51
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 1982

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Saturn
limbs
reflectivity
photometry
limb
methane
continuums
reflectance
rings
atmospheric dynamics
sublimation
deconvolution
high altitude
subtraction
symmetry
narrowband
charge coupled devices
aerosols
pixel
brightness

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Astronomy and Astrophysics

Cite this

Spatially resolved methane band photometry of Saturn. I. Absolute reflectivity and center-to-limb variations in the 6190-, 7250-, and 8900-Å bands. / West, Robert A.; Tomasko, Martin G; Smith, Bradford A.; Wijesinghe, Mahendra P.; Doose, Lyn R.; Reitsema, Harold J.; Larson, Stephen M.

In: Icarus, Vol. 51, No. 1, 1982, p. 51-64.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

West, Robert A. ; Tomasko, Martin G ; Smith, Bradford A. ; Wijesinghe, Mahendra P. ; Doose, Lyn R. ; Reitsema, Harold J. ; Larson, Stephen M. / Spatially resolved methane band photometry of Saturn. I. Absolute reflectivity and center-to-limb variations in the 6190-, 7250-, and 8900-Å bands. In: Icarus. 1982 ; Vol. 51, No. 1. pp. 51-64.
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abstract = "We present spatially resolved measurements of Saturn's absolute reflectivity in methane bands at 6190, 7250, and 8900 {\AA} and in nearby continuum regions. Images were obtained through narrow-band interference filters with a 500 × 500-pixel charge-coupled device. Band/continuum ratios were measured to high accuracy by referencing to the ring brightness in each image. Several data processing techniques enhanced the quality of the observations. These are the use of the ring symmetry to find center position and orientation, accurate subtraction of ring light, and constrained image deconvolution. Uncertainty in the continuum absolute reflectivity is ±10{\%}. Uncertainties in band/continuum ratios are from one to several percent. The Equatorial Zone was much brighter than any other latitude in the strong 8900 band image. Northern mid-latitudes were brighter than southern mid-latitudes. The latter observation indicates fewer high-altitude aerosols in the south, a possible result of atmospheric dynamics or seasonal sublimation of NH3 crystals. The data are tabulated and presented in a form suitable for quantitative scattering model analyses.",
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AU - West, Robert A.

AU - Tomasko, Martin G

AU - Smith, Bradford A.

AU - Wijesinghe, Mahendra P.

AU - Doose, Lyn R.

AU - Reitsema, Harold J.

AU - Larson, Stephen M.

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N2 - We present spatially resolved measurements of Saturn's absolute reflectivity in methane bands at 6190, 7250, and 8900 Å and in nearby continuum regions. Images were obtained through narrow-band interference filters with a 500 × 500-pixel charge-coupled device. Band/continuum ratios were measured to high accuracy by referencing to the ring brightness in each image. Several data processing techniques enhanced the quality of the observations. These are the use of the ring symmetry to find center position and orientation, accurate subtraction of ring light, and constrained image deconvolution. Uncertainty in the continuum absolute reflectivity is ±10%. Uncertainties in band/continuum ratios are from one to several percent. The Equatorial Zone was much brighter than any other latitude in the strong 8900 band image. Northern mid-latitudes were brighter than southern mid-latitudes. The latter observation indicates fewer high-altitude aerosols in the south, a possible result of atmospheric dynamics or seasonal sublimation of NH3 crystals. The data are tabulated and presented in a form suitable for quantitative scattering model analyses.

AB - We present spatially resolved measurements of Saturn's absolute reflectivity in methane bands at 6190, 7250, and 8900 Å and in nearby continuum regions. Images were obtained through narrow-band interference filters with a 500 × 500-pixel charge-coupled device. Band/continuum ratios were measured to high accuracy by referencing to the ring brightness in each image. Several data processing techniques enhanced the quality of the observations. These are the use of the ring symmetry to find center position and orientation, accurate subtraction of ring light, and constrained image deconvolution. Uncertainty in the continuum absolute reflectivity is ±10%. Uncertainties in band/continuum ratios are from one to several percent. The Equatorial Zone was much brighter than any other latitude in the strong 8900 band image. Northern mid-latitudes were brighter than southern mid-latitudes. The latter observation indicates fewer high-altitude aerosols in the south, a possible result of atmospheric dynamics or seasonal sublimation of NH3 crystals. The data are tabulated and presented in a form suitable for quantitative scattering model analyses.

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