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In recent years, differential interferometry using spaceborne synthetic aperture radar (SAR) sensors has become an established technique for detecting and monitoring centimetre-scale deformations of the Earth's surface, as well as glacier flows and landslides. Although often very efficient, the use of spaceborne SAR data has several drawbacks, namely phase artifacts caused by atmospheric effects and very low coherence due to long data acquisition intervals and the short radar wavelength of the sensor. Most important, current spaceborne sensors are not able to ensure flexible monitoring of critical regions. Airborne sensors may overcome most of the problems mentioned above, but up to now, the operational use of airborne differential SAR interferometry has been prevented by insufficiently accurate motion compensation of the platform. In this letter, first results of airborne differential interferometry using the German Aerospace Center (DLR) experimental SAR system (E-SAR) in the interferometric repeat-pass mode are addressed. This includes an analysis of long-term decorrelation behavior in L-band and, particularly, the correction of residual motion errors in heavily decorrelated interferograms. A first differential interferogram of agricultural and forested areas is presented and analyzed.
Geoscience and Remote Sensing, IEEE Transactions on (Volume:41 , Issue: 6 )
Date of Publication: June 2003