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Exploiting Patch Similarity for SAR Image Processing: The nonlocal paradigm

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5 Author(s)

Most current synthetic aperture radar (SAR) systems offer high-resolution images featuring polarimetric, interferometric, multifrequency, multiangle, or multidate information. SAR images, however, suffer from strong fluctuations due to the speckle phenomenon inherent to coherent imagery. Hence, all derived parameters display strong signal-dependent variance, preventing the full exploitation of such a wealth of information. Even with the abundance of despeckling techniques proposed over the last three decades, there is still a pressing need for new methods that can handle this variety of SAR products and efficiently eliminate speckle without sacrificing the spatial resolution. Recently, patch-based filtering has emerged as a highly successful concept in image processing. By exploiting the redundancy between similar patches, it succeeds in suppressing most of the noise with good preservation of texture and thin structures. Extensions of patch-based methods to speckle reduction and joint exploitation of multichannel SAR images (interferometric, polarimetric, or PolInSAR data) have led to the best denoising performance in radar imaging to date. We give a comprehensive survey of patch-based nonlocal filtering of SAR images, focusing on the two main ingredients of the methods: measuring patch similarity and estimating the parameters of interest from a collection of similar patches.

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Signal Processing Magazine, IEEE  (Volume:31 ,  Issue: 4 )