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Interferometric alignment of the X-SAR antenna system on the space shuttle radar topography mission

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4 Author(s)
Geudtner, D. ; Inst. of Microwave & Radar Syst., German Aerosp. Center, Wessling, Germany ; Zink, M. ; Gierull, C. ; Shaffer, S.

The on-orbit alignment of the antenna beams of both the X-band and C-band radar systems during operations of the shuttle radar topography mission/X-band synthetic aperture radar (SRTM/X-SAR) was a key requirement for achieving best interferometric performance. In this paper, we consider the X-SAR antenna beam alignment in azimuth. For a single-pass cross-track SAR interferometer, we establish the relation between yaw and pitch misalignment of the antenna beams and the resulting relative shift of the Doppler frequency bands. This relation is used to provide solutions for the mechanical adjustments of the outboard antenna and electronic beam steering to correct for azimuth misalignment. Furthermore, the effects of the X-SAR effective outboard antenna pattern on the azimuth beam alignment are analyzed. As a result, a so-called "relaxing" factor is derived, which increases the limit for the difference in antenna azimuth angle with respect to the requirement on spectral overlap, and hence spatial interferogram resolution. However, we also show that the alignment requirement is driven by the constraint on decreasing the azimuth ambiguity-to-signal ratio (AASR) for the effective outboard antenna pattern to reduce the resulting additional height error. The strategy for misalignment determination and correction is presented, and results of the analysis of the in-flight X-SAR antenna beam alignment are discussed

Published in:

Geoscience and Remote Sensing, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:40 ,  Issue: 5 )