The SASKTRAN Radiative Transfer Framework

The SASKTRAN radiative transfer framework is a radiative transfer tool developed at the University of Saskatchewan. Originally designed for use with the OSIRIS instrument ( it has since evolved to be applicable to a large variety of applications. SASKTRAN is a full framework and not just a radiative transfer model, as such it contains databases or interfaces to standard climatologies and species optical properties. It also contains multiple methods to solve the radiative transfer equation that we call engines, each one of which has a specific domain that it is applicable to. The primary engines are SASKTRAN-HR which is a fully spherical scattering model, and SASKTRAN-DO which is a discrete ordinates model suitable for nadir viewing applications, and SASKTRAN_TIR which is a spherical thermal infrared model suitable in the absence of scattering.


The SASKTRAN code is open-source and is in active development at


SASKTRAN is made available under the MIT license restricted for academic and educational use, for commercial use please contact the package authors. Commerical level support may also be available for specific applications. We request that users of the model contact the authors before publishing results using SASKTRAN, and that the following publications are acknowledged:

Zawada, D. J., Dueck, S. R., Rieger, L. A., Bourassa, A. E., Lloyd, N. D., and Degenstein, D. A.: High-resolution and Monte Carlo additions to the SASKTRAN radiative transfer model, Atmos. Meas. Tech., 8, 2609-2623,, 2015.

Bourassa, A. E., Degenstein, D. A., and Llewellyn, E. J.: SASKTRAN: A Spherical Geometry Radiative Transfer Code for Efficient Estimation of Limb Scattered Sunlight, J Quant Spectrosc Radiat Trans, Volume 109, Issue 1, 52-73,, 2008.


Inquiries and bug reports can be posted at

Specific Engine Information

Indices and tables