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Unsupervised classification of polarimetric synthetic aperture Radar images using fuzzy clustering and EM clustering

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3 Author(s)
P. R. Kersten ; Remote Sensing Div., Naval Res. Lab., Washington, DC, USA ; Jong-Sen Lee ; T. L. Ainsworth

Five clustering techniques are compared by classifying a polarimetric synthetic aperture radar image. The pixels are complex covariance matrices, which are known to have the complex Wishart distribution. Two techniques are fuzzy clustering algorithms based on the standard ℓ1 and ℓ2 metrics. Two others are new, combining a robust fuzzy C-means clustering technique with a distance measure based on the Wishart distribution. The fifth clustering technique is an application of the expectation-maximization algorithm assuming the data are Wishart. The clustering algorithms that are based on the Wishart are demonstrably more effective than the clustering algorithms that appeal only to the ℓp norms. The results support the conclusion that the pixel model is more important than the clustering mechanism.

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing  (Volume:43 ,  Issue: 3 )