The proposed novel sensor for measuring hyperspectral backscattering has wide applicability in the field of ocean optics and ocean biology and biogeochemistry. There are currently no instruments available that make this measurement. NASA scientists and NASA-funded researchers,especially those working on risk reduction and optical IOP-radiometric closure studies as well as phytoplankton functional group algorithms, and increasingly complex biogeochemical and ecosystem models are currently hindered by a lack of ground truth hyperspectral backscattering data. Given the current push within NASA programs in preparation for launch of the PACE ocean color mission and EXPORTS field campaign, development of this system is very timely.
Similar to the NASA applications, the target market for the proposed instrument is broad. Government scientists and agency-funded researchers (many federal agencies including NSF, NRL, ONR, NOAA, and foreign space and environmental agencies) in ocean science routinely measure IOPs for ocean color cal/val.