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SAR raw signal simulation of oil slicks in ocean environments

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5 Author(s)
Franceschetti, G. ; Dipt. di Ingegneria Elettronica e delle Telecomunicazioni, Naples Univ., Italy ; Iodice, Antonio ; Riccio, Daniele ; Ruello, Giuseppe
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Synthetic aperture radar (SAR) raw signal simulation is a powerful tool for design of oil slick detection and interpretation systems. In this paper, the ocean simulation issues are presented, and the main problems relating to the oil presence on the sea surface are treated. Attention is focused on the electromagnetic side of the problem, taking account of the sensor signatures, the dielectric, physical-chemical, and geometric nature of the oil slick, and the environmental conditions. The presented SAR simulator is based on an ocean model and an oil slick model. The former makes use of multiscale description of the ocean surface: the distributed surface model for the SAR-ocean interaction is considered by taking into account the nonlinear hydrodynamic effect for the water particle movement. The latter model implements a modification of the ocean spectrum, based on the Marangoni theory and accounting for the nonlinear wave interaction mechanism. However, the proposed SAR raw signal simulator is modular and flexible, thus allowing other possible physical models for modeling the oil slick effect over the ocean spectrum. Meaningful SAR simulation experiments are presented and discussed, elucidating the role of difference on pollutants, oil thickness, wind speed and direction, incident wavelength and angle and other radar parameters. Validation of the simulator is also presented by comparison with experimental data. A striking conclusion of the paper is that higher order moments (from the second on) of oil slick SAR image statistics are quite different compared to those pertinent to an equivalent wind speed decrease on the imaged area. This suggests a convenient way to define new appropriate oil slick signatures.

Published in:

Geoscience and Remote Sensing, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:40 ,  Issue: 9 )

Date of Publication:

Sep 2002

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