Improved discrete ordinate solutions in the presence of an anisotropically reflecting lower boundary: Upgrades of the DISORT computational tool
A successor version 3 of DISORT (DISORT3) is presented with important upgrades that improve the accuracy, efficiency, and stability of the algorithm. Compared with version 2 (DISORT2 released in 2000) these upgrades include (a) a redesigned BRDF computation that improves both speed and accuracy, (b) a revised treatment of the single scattering correction, and (c) additional efficiency and stability upgrades for beam sources. In DISORT3 the BRDF computation is improved in the following three ways: (i) the Fourier decomposition is prepared "off-line", thus avoiding the repeated internal computations done in DISORT2; (ii) a large enough number of terms in the Fourier expansion of the BRDF is employed to guarantee accurate values of the expansion coefficients (default is 200 instead of 50 in DISORT2); (iii) in the post-processing step the reflection of the direct attenuated beam from the lower boundary is included resulting in a more accurate single scattering correction. These improvements in the treatment of the BRDF have led to improved accuracy and a several-fold increase in speed. In addition, the stability of beam sources has been improved by removing a singularity occurring when the cosine of the incident beam angle is too close to the reciprocal of any of the eigenvalues. The efficiency for beam sources has been further improved from reducing by a factor of 2 (compared to DISORT2) the dimension of the linear system of equations that must be solved to obtain the particular solutions, and by replacing the LINPAK routines used in DISORT2 by LAPACK 3.5 in DISORT3. These beam source stability and efficiency upgrades bring enhanced stability and an additional 5-7% improvement in speed. Numerical results are provided to demonstrate and quantify the improvements in accuracy and efficiency of DISORT3 compared to DISORT2.