Sky Glow from Cities: The Army Illumination Model v2

Report No. ARL-TR-5719
Authors: Richard C. Shirkey
Date/Pages: September 2011; 48 pages
Abstract: The increasing number of people living on earth and the corresponding increase in outdoor lighting has resulted in light pollution—a brightening night sky that has obliterated the stars for much of the world's population. However, for military purposes, in particular Night Vision Goggle (NVG) users, this light can allow for detection of targets that might ordinarily not be seen. The amount of light scattered from an urban location at night is a complicated function of light type, output and shielding, ground albedo, and the atmosphere that it must interact with. Clouds and various types of airborne particulates will also vary the amount of light received by NVGs. This report implements and extends the methods of Treanor and Garstang to estimate the light level received outside of urban locations. Clouds effects along with lunar and sky background illumination are included as are relevant data bases.
Distribution: Approved for public release
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Last Update / Reviewed: September 1, 2011