Levin I. M.
The paper reviews and analyzes few-parameters optical models of water inherent optical properties (IOPs). These models are classified as correlational and structural models. Correlational models establish relations either between values of a single IOP at different wavelengths (spectral models) or between values of several IOPs at the same wavelength. The correlations between attenuation, scattering and backscattering coefficients at 550 nm were shown to be valid for the majority of open and coastal regions of the World Ocean. In particular, they can be used to compute parameters of under-water imaging systems operating in this spectral range. Correlational models make it possible to determine the values of IOP for the whole visual spectrum on the basis of the value of the attenuation coefficient at 550 nm. The structural models describe IOPs in terms of concentrations of optically active matters (OAM): phytoplankton, sediment and colored dissolved organic matter. We show that these models are very diverse and often mutually contradictory; their domain of application is limited and their accuracy is often unknown. Nevertheless, they make it possible to estimate a range of possible IOP variation for given OAM concentrations.