Working with Landsat 8, a tutorial. 3. conversion to radiance and brightness temperature at top-of-atmosphere

Useful tutorial for deriving brightness temperature from Landsat 8!

Scientia Plus Conscientia

In this third post of the Landsat 8 series we will implement, step by step, the procedures explained in the Landsat web site for converting the digital numbers in the satellite images to geophysical measurements of spectral radiance, as measured at the sensor and without atmospheric correction, called ‘top-of-atmosphere’ or simply TOA.

The images that we download as TIF files are coded into 16-bit unsigned integer images. These are referred to as digital numbers. For some simple purposes, as for example, measuring the extent of features identifiable by eye, these digital numbers are perfectly sufficient. However, when we need to assess the geophysical properties of the terrain or make studies of land cover change over time, we might find convenient to convert these raw digital numbers to their original values of radiance, mostly to be able to compute reflectance, and compare surfaces on a solid geophysical basis.

Converting to radiance…

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About Qiusheng Wu

Assistant Professor of Geography at Binghamton University, State University of New York

Posted on November 27, 2014, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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