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This paper analyzes the statistical properties of the very high frequency (VHF)-band radar backscattering from coniferous trees by incorporating forest ground truth data into a physical-optics (PO) model that assumes horizontally transmit and receive polarizations and dominant double-bounce scattering from vertical stems standing on an undulating ground surface. The analysis shows that a statistically adequate model for the tree backscattering amplitude can be presented as a mixture of generalized gamma or lognormal distribution, and the mixture model can be reduced to a single density model if the trees with trunk volumes exceeding an appropriate threshold are to be taken into account. The generalized gamma density is shown to provide an appreciably better fit to the exceedance functions associated with the PO model data than that for the lognormal density. The results can be used to design statistically adequate models of forest clutter for VHF synthetic aperture radar systems.
Geoscience and Remote Sensing, IEEE Transactions on (Volume:49 , Issue: 8 )
Date of Publication: Aug. 2011