Atmosphere Research UKZN-Westville

Atmospheric Research

What is atmospheric remote sensing

Atmospheric remote sensing is a process whereby information is gathered on a certain phenomenon without actually physically making contact with the phenomenon therefore there is a use of aerial technologies that can classify and identifying phenomenon (Earth observatory, 2014). Remote sensors are capable of collecting data by detecting energy that is reflected from the earth’s atmosphere. These sensors can be either situated on satellite, mounted on aircrafts or be loaded onto vehicles if they are portable. These remote sensors can either be passive or active with regards to passive sensors, they respond to external stimuli (Earth observatory, 2014). Passive remote sensing sensors are only used during daylight hours, since the data collected is in daylight hours data recorded us usually from the sun in the form of radiation data (Earth observatory, 2014). In contrast with passive sensors active sensors used stimuli that are internal in the data collection about earth (National Ocean and atmospheric administration, 2014). Laser beams are from a remote sensing system projects a laser beam onto the surface of the earth, while measuring the time taken for the laser beam to be reflected back to the sensor. Remote sensing enables researchers to make it possible to collect data from dangerous and other wise inaccessible areas that would normally be considered impossible (National ocean and atmospheric administration, 2014). Remote sensing was first defined because it was able to identify, observe and measure an object without coming into direct physical contact with it according to the National Ocean and atmospheric administration (2014). This process consists of detecting and measuring radiation of different wavelengths that are reflected or emitted from distant objects or materials, which are identified and categorized by their, type, substance and spatialdistribution (National Ocean and atmospheric administration, 2014).