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This study aims to understand the effects of the topographic slope variation on the vegetation backscattering characteristics of polarimetric imaging radar. Most of the previous studies in modeling microwave backscattering signatures of vegetated area have been carried out over relatively flat areas. In order to model vegetation scattering mechanisms of mountainous forests, this paper presents an improvement of the radiative transfer model that accounts for the tilted scattering surface beneath a forest canopy. An L-band polarimetric synthetic aperture radar (SAR) data set acquired by the NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory Airborne SAR system was used to test and to assess the vegetation scattering model for a sloping forest area. Experimental result shows the proposed model to be adequate for evaluating slope-induced changes in microwave scattering mechanisms.
Geoscience and Remote Sensing, IEEE Transactions on (Volume:50 , Issue: 11 )
Date of Publication: Nov. 2012