Skip to Main Content
We propose a polarimetric two-scale surface scattering model employed to retrieve the surface parameters of bare soils from polarimetric synthetic aperture radar or scatterometer data. The scattering surface considered here is composed of slightly rough randomly tilted facets, for which the small perturbation scattering method holds. The facet random tilt causes both a random variation of the local incidence angle and a random rotation of the local incidence plane around the line of sight. Unlike other similar already existing approaches, our method considers both these stochastic effects in the analytical evaluation of the facet scattering matrix, and their statistical modeling is derived from a proper statistical description of the scattering surface. In particular, we assume that the facet slope (i.e., the slope of the large-scale surface roughness) is a Gaussian random variable, in agreement with both classical and fractal surface models. The proposed scattering model is then used to retrieve bare soil moisture and (large-scale) roughness from the co- and cross-polarized ratios. The performance of the resulting retrieval algorithm and its validity limits are finally assessed by comparing obtained results to “ in situ” measurements. To this aim, data from different measurement campaigns available in literature are employed.