Efficient finite-difference time-domain scheme for light scattering by dielectric particles: application to aerosols. Academic Article uri icon


  • We have examined the Maxwell-Garnett, inverted Maxwell-Garnett, and Bruggeman rules for evaluation of the mean permittivity involving partially empty cells at particle surface in conjunction with the finite-difference time-domain (FDTD) computation. Sensitivity studies show that the inverted Maxwell-Garnett rule is the most effective in reducing the staircasing effect. The discontinuity of permittivity at the interface of free space and the particle medium can be minimized by use of an effective permittivity at the cell edges determined by the average of the permittivity values associated with adjacent cells. The efficiency of the FDTD computational program is further improved by use of a perfectly matched layer absorbing boundary condition and the appropriate coding technique. The accuracy of the FDTD method is assessed on the basis of a comparison of the FDTD and the Mie calculations for ice spheres. This program is then applied to light scattering by convex and concave aerosol particles. Comparisons of the scattering phase function for these types of aerosol with those for spheres and spheroids show substantial differences in backscattering directions. Finally, we illustrate that the FDTD method is robust and flexible in computing the scattering properties of particles with complex morphological configurations.

published proceedings

  • Appl Opt

author list (cited authors)

  • Yang, P., Liou, K. N., Mishchenko, M. I., & Gao, B. C.

citation count

  • 118

complete list of authors

  • Yang, P||Liou, KN||Mishchenko, MI||Gao, BC

publication date

  • July 2000