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First Demonstration of Agriculture Height Retrieval With PolInSAR Airborne Data

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3 Author(s)
Juan M. Lopez-Sanchez ; Signals, Systems and Telecommunication Group, University of Alicante, Alicante, Spain ; Irena Hajnsek ; J. David Ballester-Berman

A set of three quad-pol images acquired at the L-band in interferometric repeat-pass mode by the German Aerospace Center (DLR) with the Experimental SAR (E-SAR) system, in parallel with the AgriSAR2006 campaign, has been used to provide, for the first time with airborne data, a demonstration of the retrieval of vegetation height from agricultural crops by means of polarimetric SAR interferometry (PolInSAR)-based techniques. Despite the low frequency of the data, hence providing a weak response from the vegetation volume in contrast to the ground, accurate estimates of vegetation height at field level have been obtained over winter rape and maize fields. The same procedure does not yield valid estimates for wheat, barley, and sugar beet fields due to a mismatch with the physical model employed in the inversion and to the specific crop condition at the date of acquisition. These results show the value of the information provided by both interferometry and polarimetry for some agriculture monitoring practices.

Published in:

IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Letters  (Volume:9 ,  Issue: 2 )