Radiance factor calibration of near-infrared spectral images of Mars

David R. Klassen, James F. Bell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


We present radiometrically calibrated spectrophotometric images of Mars taken at the NASA Infrared Telescope Facility (IRTF) near and during the 1995 and 1999 oppositions. Absolute intensity and radiance factor (rF = I/F) values have been calculated for approximately 95% of the surface over all longitudes between -70° to 90° latitude in the 1.5- to 4.1-μm spectral region at a spectral resolution (Δλ/λ) of 1.5%. Values of radiance factor range from rF = 0.4 to 0.6 at 2.2 μm for the bright regions such as Moab and Arabia to rF = 0.12 to 0.3 at 2.2 μm around the dark regions Syrtis Major and Acidalia Planitia. Variations are seen due to seasonal dust and/or condensate cloud cover and viewing geometry. Our results are generally consistent with the few reported previous radiance factor determinations for Mars. These data are unique among ground-based data in their relatively high spatial resolution (≲200 km/pixel at the sub-Earth point) and coverage combined with their spectral resolution and coverage. These radiometrically calibrated observations can be used as input to studies focusing on spectral unmixing of surface and atmospheric components, radiative transfer modeling of disk and limb radiances, and photometric modeling of the martian phase function.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)66-77
Number of pages12
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 1 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Martian atmosphere
  • Martian surface
  • Telescopic observations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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