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Geoscience and Remote Sensing, IEEE Transactions on

Issue 4 • Date July 1986

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  • IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): c1
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  • IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Society

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): c2
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  • Table of contents

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 441
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  • About the cover

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 442
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  • Foreword

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 443 - 444
    Cited by:  Papers (2)
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  • SIR-B-The Second Shuttle Imaging Radar Experiment

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 445 - 452
    Cited by:  Papers (9)  |  Patents (2)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (5622 KB)  

    On October 5, 1984, the second Shuttle Imaging Radar (SIR-B) was launched into orbit aboard the space shuttle Challenger. SIR-B is part of an evolutionary radar program designed to progressively develop a multifrequency, multipolarization synthetic aperture radar with a variable Earth-imaging geometry. The SIR-B instrument is an upgraded version of SIR-A, with the additional capability of tilting the antenna mechanically to acquire imagery at variable incidence angles ranging from 15°to 60°.The variable look angle capability provided a means of acquiring multiple incidence angle imagery over specific targets on successive days of the mission. These data are being used to classify surface features by their backscatter signatures as a function of incidence angle and for topographic mapping. In addition to the antenna tilt capability, a digital data-handling system was added to increase the dynamic range, the resolution was improved by a factor of two over SIR-A, and a calibration subsystem was added to improve the radiometric accuracy of the data. The mission had a number of problems, including loss of the primary mary digital data path between the shuttle and the ground. In spite of these problems, approximately 20 percent of the planned digital data were collected over the 8-day shuttle mission corresponding to an areal coverage of about 6.4 million km2. View full abstract»

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  • External Calibration of SIR-B Imagery with Area-Extended and Point Targets

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 453 - 461
    Cited by:  Papers (20)
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    Data takes on two ascending orbits of the Shuttle Imaging Radar-B (SIR-B) over an agricultural test site in west-central Illinois were used to establish end-to-end transfer functions for conversion of the digital numbers on the 8-bit image to values of the radar backscattering coefficient ¿0 (m2/m2) in dB. The transfer function for each data take was defined by the SIR-B response to an array of six calibrated point targets of known radar cross section (transponders) and to a large number of area-extended targets also with known radar cross section as measured by externally calibrated, truck-mounted scatterometers. The radar cross section of each transponder at the SIR-B center frequency was measured on an antenna range as a function of the local angle of incidence. Two truck-mounted scatterometers observed 20-80 agricultural fields daily at 1.6 GHz with HH-polarization and at azimuth viewing angles and incidence angles equivalent to those of the SIR-B. The form of the transfer function is completely defined by the SIR-B receiver and the incoherent averaging procedure incorporated into production of the standard SIR-B image product. Assuming that the processing properly accounts for the antenna gain, all transfer function coefficients are known except for the thermal noise power and a system " constant" that has been shown to vary as a function of uncommanded changes in the effective SIR-B transmit power. View full abstract»

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  • Automated Matching of Pairs of SIR-B Images for Elevation Mapping

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 462 - 472
    Cited by:  Papers (10)
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    During the SIR-B mission in October 1984, a significant number of overlapping synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images of various ground areas was collected. This has offered the first opportunity to perform stereo analyses on images from space that cover large ground areas to determine elevation information. This paper presents the preliminary results of an investigation to obtain elevation data from stereo pairs of SIR-B images. First, the accuracy with which elevation information can be derived from SIR-B image pairs is evaluated theoretically. It is shown that elevation accuracy is a function of the slant range resolution, the incidence angles with which the stereo pair is obtained, the accuracies in spacecraft state estimation, and determination of corresponding pixels in the stereo pair. Next, a hierarchical method is developed to match the corresponding pixels. This method involves iterative removal of local distortions and correlations of pairs of local neighborhoods in the two images. Since it is necessary to perform the matching at every pixel in the image, it is very computationally intensive. Therefore, it has been implemented on the Massively Parallel Processor (MPP) at the Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC). The MPP's speed permits two iterations of this technique to operate on a pair of 512 × 512 images within 7 s. Results of applying this algorithm to SIR-B images of Mount Shasta, CA, are shown. The matching algorithm performs well in regions of the image with significant features. View full abstract»

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  • Radar Stereomapping Techniques and Application to SIR-B Images of Mt. Shasta

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 473 - 481
    Cited by:  Papers (15)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (5207 KB)  

    One of the goals of the SIR-B experiment was the definition of optimum radar incidence and intersection angles for radargrammetric stereoscopy by comparing the results from three separate data reduction methods. To this end three overlapping images of the prime radargrammetric site (Mt. Shasta in northern California) were obtained, fewer than anticipated. This paper describes the mathematical basis for radar stereomapping, along with preliminary results from one of the methods (using a so-called "analytical" stereoplotter) for the Mt. Shasta site. Height coordinate errors range from 60 to 170 m depending on the density (number per ground area) of ground control points used. View full abstract»

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  • Multiple Incidence Angle SIR-B Expenment Over Argentina: Stereo-Radargrammetrc Analysis

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 482 - 491
    Cited by:  Papers (5)
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    Four overlapping SIR-B radar images were obtained across southern Argentina; these form a total of six stereo models with intersection angles ranging from 5° to 23°. This data set is uniquely suited for experimental evaluation of some basic assumptions on stereo -radargrammetry. Each stereo model was measured on a specially programmed photogrammetric analytical plotter; the resulting coordinates of ground points were compared with those from maps. It is concluded that accuracies are lower than expected at the larger stereointersection angles, amounting to about ±60 m in each coordinate direction. This might be explained by limitations of the quality of stereofusion caused by look angle differences and specular point migration, backscatter differences due to different incidence angles, differences in azimuth directions, and image noise and speckle. View full abstract»

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  • Multiple Incidence Angle SIR-B Experiment Over Argentina: Generation of Secondary Image Products

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 492 - 497
    Cited by:  Papers (6)
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    Original radar images may be geometrically and radiometrically distorted. This may be a particular problem when multiple angle imagery is analyzed and there is topographic relief in the area of interest. This paper describes a set of techniques designed to combine a multiple angle radar data set with a digital terrain elevation model, to generate a set of new images called secondary image products. These new images are geometrically rectified radar ortho-images, radiometrically rectified images, and stereo ortho-images. These secondary images can then reliably be used for thematic interpretation. View full abstract»

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  • Multiple Incidence Angle SIR-B Experiment Over Argentina: Mapping of Forest Units

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 498 - 509
    Cited by:  Papers (16)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (8322 KB)  

    Multiple incidence angle SIR-B data of the Cordón la Grasa region of the Chubut Province of Argentina are used to discriminate nate various forest types by their relative brightness versus incidence angle signatures. The region consists of several species of Nothofagas which change in canopy structure with elevation, slope, and exposure. In general, the factors that appear to impact the radar response most are canopy structure, density, and ground cover (presence or absence of dead trunks and branches in particular). The results of this work indicate that 1) different forest species, and structures of a singlee-species, may be discriminated using multiple incidence angle radar-imagery and 2) it is essential to consider the variation in backscatter due to incidence angle when analyzing and comparing data collected at varying frequencies and polarizations. View full abstract»

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  • The SIR-B Observations of Microwave Backscatter Dependence on Soil Moisture, Surface Roughness, and Vegetation Covers

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 510 - 516
    Cited by:  Papers (24)
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    An experiment was conducted from an L-band syntheticaperture perture radar aboard space shuttle Challenger in October 1984 to study the microwave backscatter dependence on soil moisture, surface roughness, and vegetation cover. The results based on the anlyses of an image obtained at 21° incidence angle show a positive correlation between scattering coefficient and soil moisture content, with a sensitivity comparable to that derived from the ground radar measurements [1]. The surface roughness strongly affects the microwave backscatter. A factor of 2 change in the standard deviation of surface roughness height gives a corresponding change of about 8 dB in the scattering coefficient. The microwave backscatter also depends on the vegetation types. Under the dry soil conditions, the scattering coefficient is observed to change from about -24 dB for an alfalfa or lettuce field to about -17 dB for a mature corn field. These results suggest that observations with a synthetic-aperture radar system of multiple frequencies ies and polarizations are required to unravel the effects of soil ture,oisre, surface roughness, and vegetation cover. View full abstract»

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  • Preliminaly Evaluation of the SIR-B Response to Soil Moisture, Surface Roughness, and Crop Canopy Cover

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 517 - 526
    Cited by:  Papers (23)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (2896 KB)  

    stract-Two pre-dawn ascending data-akes (dt. 49.2 and 97.2) by the Shuttle Imaging Radar (SIR-B) are used to evaluate the effects of soil moisture, surface roughness, and crop canopy cover on radar backscattering. The two images are separated in acquisition date by three days and were obtained at the same local angle of incidence (¿1 = 30°) but with opposite azimuth viewing directions (¿¿ = 180°). The digitally recorded and processed SIR-B imagery is externallyi-calibrated with respect to the radar backscattering coefficient ¿° via response to arrays of point and area-extended targets of known radar cross section. Extensive ancillary data pertaining to scene physical and biophysical al conditions were collected from approximately 400 agricultural fields within a 20 km × 20 km test site in west-central Illinois. The test site was largely agricultural and consisted primarily of corn and soybeans at harvest-ready conditions. For the agricultural portions of the scene, ¿°SIR-B is found to vary over a 16-to 20-dB dynamic range for a given observation date. The magnitude of ¿°SIR-B is found to be proportional to soil moisture, surface roughness, and canopy biomass. Although the SIR-B sensor parameters es ( L-band, HH polarization, ¿nd 0 ° 300) were not expected to be optimum for estimation of near-surface soil moisture, significant linear correlations are observed between ¿°SIR-B (in decibels) and 0-5-cm volumetric moisture m¿. For a given target class as broadly defined by surface roughness and canopy cover, linear regression of ¿°SIR-B (dB) to m¿ generally yields correlation coefficients of r2 0.8. View full abstract»

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  • Radar Observation Over Freiburg

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 527 - 534
    Cited by:  Papers (3)
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    The SIR-B experiment over the German test siteei-Freiburg/Kaiserstuhl documents the usefulness of L-band radar data for land use classification. It shows furthermore the importance of the spatial resolution for target signature analyses and demonstrates the usefulness of compact receivers and active calibrators for sensor calibration. View full abstract»

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  • Forest Canopy Characterization and Vegetation Penetration Assessment with Space-Borne Radar

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 535 - 542
    Cited by:  Papers (13)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (6060 KB)  

    Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) images from the- National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Shuttle Imaging Radar-B (SIR-B) Mission were used to analyze the effects of radar incidence angle on information content and vegetation penetration. Three SAR data sets using incidence angles of 26°, 46°, and 58° were acquired over the mangrove jungles of Southern Bangladesh. The data sets were digitally processed using 3 × 3, 7 × 7, and 11 × 11 spatial filters and geometrically registered to a multisource-multilevel-corraborative data base consisting of Landsat data, forest map data, and in situ acquired forest enumeration and topographic information. Analyses revealed that significant vegetation "penetration" was found at all angles and that tree and canopy structural morphology may exert an influence on this phenomenon. View full abstract»

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  • On the Estimation of Wave Slope-and Height-Varnance Spectra from SAR Imagery

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 543 - 551
    Cited by:  Papers (47)
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    A procedure is described for using synthetic aperture radar (SAR) imagery to estimate two-dimensional ocean wave slope-and height-variance spectra. The logic underpinning the procedure is based both on the results of the numerical simulation of SAR wave imagery and analytic descriptions of the SAR imaging process. The procedure, when applied to SAR imagery of waves acquired during the recent Shuttle Imaging Radar Mission (SIR-B), is shown to produce spectra that agree with independent measures of both the two-dimensional slope-and height-variance spectra. The implications of these results for future SAR missions aimed at measuring ocean waves are considered. View full abstract»

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  • SIR-B Observations of Ocean Waves in the NE Atlantic

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 552 - 558
    Cited by:  Papers (8)
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    Synthetic-aperture radar (SAR) imagery from SIR-B was obtained over a deep-water site in the NE Atlantic Ocean. Selected images were Fourier analyzed in order to compare SAR measurements of ocean waves with simultaneous data obtained from wave buoys deployed in the site. The wave heights were not large enough to be detected in the first pass over the site, but larger wave amplitudes were present in two subsequent passes that were almost orthogonal and separated by 6 h. The first of these passes showed a system of waves traveling close to the range direction, and secondary wave systems were present in some spectra. Azimuth-traveling waves were seen clearly on only one of the spectra from the second of these passes. All the spectra had the appearance expected from a linear imaging theory, and no significant discrepancies were found between the SAR and buoy measurements of the wavelengths and directions of the dominant wave systems. However, the difficulty in detecting azimuth-traveling waves here may be hard to explain in terms of existing theories, but this is not a firm conclusion because large variations (factors of about 4) in spectral intensity were observed across distances as small as 20 km. This variability means that it is very difficult to determine whether SIR-B was observing the true sea state. Procedures to obtain more accurate tests of sea-imaging theories are discussed. View full abstract»

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  • Comparison of Simulated and Measured Synthetic Aperture Radar Image Spectra with Buoy-Derived Ocean Wave Spectra During the Shuttle Imaging Radar B Mission

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 559 - 566
    Cited by:  Papers (13)
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    During the SIR-B mission over the North Sea, two successful synthetic aperture radar (SAR) data takes with simultaneous buoy measurements of ocean wave spectra have been obtained on October 6 and 8, 1984. On October 6, the SAR imaging of ocean waves was predicted as strongly nonlinear and on October 8 as almost linear. The SIR-B experiment confirmed the theoretical predictions. By applying the SAR imaging model based on velocity bunching theory the SAR image spectra are calculated from the measured ocean wave spectra. These calculated SAR image spectra are compared with the SIR-B derived SAR image spectra and it is shown that both agree quite well. This is considered as a further experimental confirmation for the velocity bunching model that has been proposed for describing SAR imaging of ocean surface waves. View full abstract»

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  • SIR-B Experiments in Japan: Sensor Calibration and Oil Pollution Detection Over Ocean

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 567 - 574
    Cited by:  Papers (1)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (3876 KB)  

    Preliminary results of the SIR-B experiments conducted in Japan are reported mainly on the sensor calibration and the oil pollution experiments. No significant result was obtained for the rice crop experiment which was carried out at the same time, mainly due to the late flight of SIR-B. The sensor calibration experiment was eventually reduced to only the evaluation of the imaging characteristics of SIR-B. However, a reasonable relation between the image count and RCS is found, and the resolution analysis by using the corner reflector images gives satisfactory results. A possible cause leading to what are rather overestimates of the resolution is pointed out to be the background clutter. A simulated oil slick area over sea was clearly detected on the SIR-B image, although the incident angle was not so appropriate for the purpose. This result demonstrates the capability of a space-borne synthetic aperture radar for effective surveillance of oil spills over high seas. View full abstract»

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  • Geological Assessment of SIR-B Imagery of the Amadeus Basin, N. T., Australia

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 575 - 581
    Cited by:  Papers (1)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (2587 KB)  

    When SIR-B imagery of the arid margin of the Simpson Desert of Central Australia is combined with Landsat MSS principal component data, regional geological structures are clearly defined. A variety of sedimentary lithological units are mapped on the basis of outcrop morphology and MSS spectral variations on the color-Composite image. Relative backscatter power from SIR-B digital imagery is observed to correlate with surface roughness for a variety of lithological terrains. View full abstract»

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  • SIR-B Radar Imagery of Volcanic Deposits in the Andes

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 582 - 589
    Cited by:  Papers (1)
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    The Andean Cordillera of western South America between 16°S and 28°S and south of 34°S latitude have been two of the most volcanically active areas in the world for the last 25 million years (Ma). Synthetic-aperture radar imagery from the Shuttle Imaging Radar-mission B (SIR-B) was collected in October 1984 over the central Andes between 20°S and 24°S and also south of 42 °S. Despite signal-strength problems that drastically reduced the signal-to-noise (S/N) ratio of the images, volcanic features of both areas show up well. In particular, ignimbrite sheets formed by large explosive eruptions stand out as very strong radar reflectors due to their characteristically rough erosional surface. High backscatter is apparently caused by erosional relief on the ignimbrites at scales ranging from the radar wavelength (23 cm for SIR-B) to the 30-200 m scale of quebradas (gullies and canyons). The quebradas are steep-sided and straight, and have a similar southeast orientation in ignimbrites separated by as much as 450 km spatially and 6 Ma temporally. The consistent regional erosional pattern appears unrelated to the emplacement of the ignimbrites, and is probably caused by preferential eolian erosion in the direction of the prevailing wind. Hand-held space photographs, ground observations, and Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) imagery support the interpretation of the ignimbrite radar signature. The Chilean volcano Michinmahúida (43°S) was imaged by four radar data takes at different incidence angles, which show tectonic, glacial, and volcanic features of that nearly inaccessible and often cloud-covered region. View full abstract»

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  • Microwave Penetration and Attenuation in Desert Soil: A Field Experiment with the Shuttle Imaging Radar

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 590 - 594
    Cited by:  Papers (13)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (2436 KB)  

    Receivers buried in the Nevada desert were used with the Shuttle Imaging Radar to measure microwave attenuation as a function of soil moisture in situ. Results agree closely with laboratory measureements of attenuation and suggest that penetration of tens of centimeters in desert soils is common for L-band (1.2-GHz) radar. View full abstract»

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  • SIR-B Subsurface Imaging of a Sand-Buried Landscape: Al Labbah Plateau, Saudi Arabia

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 595 - 602
    Cited by:  Papers (8)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (7550 KB)  

    Despite a diminution in the transmit and receive power of the SIR-B system, a striking L-band radar image was produced for a portion of the southern Al Labbah Plateau, Saudi Arabia, a landscape dominated by eolian sand features. Distinct tonal and digital number (DN) signatures uniquely define 1) areas where the SIR-B beam penetrated a relatively thin sand sheet to be diffusely reflected from the buried carbonate rocks of the Aruma Formation and 2) a thick sand hill and associative sand shadow where SIR-B subsurface imaging did not occur. Computer analysis of the digital SIR-B image data indicates there is about a 26-DN difference between the sand-buried Aruma Formation and the unpenetrated sand hill and shadow. Depth measurements from more than 80 test holes show that subsurface imaging occurred through a sand layer whose maximum measured thickness is 1.24 m. The penetrated medium is a fine-to medium-grained low-density quartz sand that had a very low moisture content (average of about 0.2 weight percent) on the day of the Space Shuttle overpass. The minimum thickness of sand features where subsurface imaging did not occur is thought to be about 3.1 m. View full abstract»

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  • Shuttle Imaging Radar: Physical Controls on Signal Penetration and Subsurface Scattenng in the Eastern Sahara

    Publication Year: 1986 , Page(s): 603 - 623
    Cited by:  Papers (17)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (21171 KB)  

    SIR-A signal penetration and subsurface backscatter within the upper meter or so of the sediment blanket in the Eastern Sahara of southern Egypt and northern Sudan are enhanced both by radar sensor parameters and by the physical and chemical characteristics of eolian and alluvial materials. Interpretation of SIR-A images by McCauley et al. [1], [2] dramatically changed previous concepts of the role that fluvial processes have played over the past 10000 to 30000000 years in shaping this now extremely flat, featureless, and hyperarid landscape. In the present paper we summarize the near-surface stratigraphy, the electrical properties of materials, and the types of radar interfaces found to be responsible for different classes of SIR-A tonal response. The dominant factors related to efficient microwave signal penetration into the sediment blanket include a) favorable distribution of particle sizes, b) extremely low moisture content and c) reduced geometric scattering at the SIR-A frequency (1.3 GHz). The depth of signal penetration that results in a recorded backscatter, here called "radar imaging depth," was documented in the field to be a maximum of 1.5 m, or 0.25 of the calculated "skin depth," for the sediment blanket. Radar imaging depth is estimated to be between 2 and 3 m for active sand dune materials. Diverse permittivity interfaces and volume scatterers within the shallow subsurface are responsible for most of the observed backscatter not directly attributable to grazing outcrops. View full abstract»

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Aims & Scope

 

IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON GEOSCIENCE AND REMOTE SENSING (TGRS) is a monthly publication that focuses on the theory, concepts, and techniques of science and engineering as applied to sensing the land, oceans, atmosphere, and space; and the processing, interpretation, and dissemination of this information.

 

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Meet Our Editors

Editor-in-Chief
Antonio J. Plaza
University of Extremadura