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Welcome to the NASA Langley Research Center Polarimetry Website

Image Credit:  Tim Marvel SSAI, NASA LaRC
Image Credit: Tim Marvel SSAI/NASA LaRC (click image above for larger view)
Here you will find projects, software and LUT databases dedicated to remote sensing of the Earth using polarimetry.


RSP-MAPP aerosol and ocean retrieval algorithm for the NASA GISS Research Scanning Polarimeter (RSP). RSP-MAPP is being adapted to PACE (PACE-MAPP). RSP-MAPP products may be downloaded from the NASA GISS RSP website. The paper describing RSP-MAPP is open-access and can be found here.


PACE-MAPP is a modified version of RSP-MAPP applied to combined measurements from the two polarimeters (SPEXone and HARP2) and OCI SWIR bands onboard PACE. PACE-MAPP will retrieve aerosol optical and microphysical properties of fine mode aerosols, coarse mode sea salt, and coarse mode dust and the ocean properties using a bio-optical model that incorporates absorption and scattering by coated particles. A unique aspect of PACE-MAPP is that we will be validating the ocean products using airborne HSRL ocean measurements.


The PolCube cubesat polarimeter is a multi-angle, multi-channel polarimeter that occupies 12 U after integration with the spacecraft bus. PolCube has 4 channels and 4 viewing angles per channel.

LUT databases

The SIR-A-LUT was developed for accurate and fast forward modeling of homogenous spheres for polarimeters and lidars (Lorenz-Mie theory). The databases can be downloaded from here for polarimeters (and spectroradiometers such as MODIS or OCI) and lidar. Code is available to read the databases in Matlab, C++, Fortran, and Python. (Suggestions and comments to improve these readers are welcome.)


DISORT (datafile link TBD.)
VDISORT (datafile link TBD.)

Postdocs and internships

If you are interested in postdoc or internship opportunities to work on these projects,
please contact us.