Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Applied Physics


Department of Engineering Physics

First Advisor

Todd V. Small, PhD


The bidirectional reflectance distribution function (BRDF) describes material reflectance by describing how incident irradiance reflects into all possible scatter angles as a function of incident angle. However, a solar panel has unique features that are not featured in any of these previously known models. A previous project at the Air Force Institute of Technology (AFIT) created a novel microfacet-like BRDF to model a solar panel with a prominent diffractive feature present which had not been previously modeled. This BRDF was coded into MATLAB for modeling purposes and C++ to test its speed with a MEX function call. A previous thesis at sought to create a generalized fitting method which could generate the material parameters for a model given BRDF data. This project applied this method to the solar panel BRDF to see if it could handle fitting a complex model. In the end, Bishop’s method struggled to fit the solar panel BRDF to real world data but shows potential promise with some modifications.

AFIT Designator


Included in

Optics Commons