Science Service System

Summary of Proposal MTH0222

TitleSingular point characterization and monitoring using TerraSAR-X advanced modes
Investigator Tison, Céline - CNES, DCT/SI/AR
Team Members
Dr. Souyris, Jean-Claude - CNES, DCT/SI/AR
Dr. Tison, Céline - CNES, DCT/SI/AR
SummaryTerraSAR-X will provide very innovative and very promising SAR data for science, including high resolution, polarimetry and interferometry. Moreover, several acquisition modes (Stripmap, ScanSAR and Spotlight) will be available.
This proposal is intended to focus on information extraction from singular points using polarimetry, interferometry and high resolution. The overall objective is a better understanding of the SAR signal coming from these specific points. Singular points can be defined from various criteria:
- amplitude criterion: for pixels that backscatter a iso-magnitude signal throughout a temporal database (stability towards time);
- backscattering pattern criterion: for pixels with specific spectral behaviour; time-frequency analysis enables to discriminate between highly directive targets and quasi-isotropic targets;
- polarimetric criterion: for pixels with pure polarimetric behaviour; polarimetric analysis enables to identify the nature of backscattering mechanisms.
Whatever the criterion, singular pixels have a singular behaviour with regards to fully developed speckle. They are linked to canonical structures (dihedral, trihedral, etc.). In addition to that, it is expected that the temporal stability, the polarimetric purity and the backscattering pattern shape are strongly connected.
The detection and characterization of such points is based on different methods: polarimetric decomposition, time-frequency analysis, phase center motion monitoring. It is connected to several research fields: complementarity between different acquisition modes and complementarity between X-band and C-band. CNES has already acquired extended data takes of ENVISAT and ERS images in the framework of singular point characterization and monitoring in particular for persistent point interferometry application. These images will be used to drive comparisons between C and X bands behaviours.

To summarize, three major research axes have been identified :
• mono-image characterization: time-frequency and polarimetry,
• multi-modes and multi-wavelength characterization,
• multi-temporal characterization.

This study will mainly focus on urban environment context, which is expected to be better characterized by TerraSAR-X than the previous missions, thanks to the availability of the above-mentioned advanced modes. In depth analysis and comparison with the most recent results in the field (including the contribution of DLR [SCH-05]) will be conducted.

CNES has submitted two other proposals to the TerraSAR-X AO :
1. “Potential of TerraSAR-X advanced modes for SAR interferometry”,
2. “TerraSAR-X contribution to reference remote sensing data base”.
The first one and the present one address different theoretical problems of SAR methods, whereas the last one is dedicated to applications in the framework of land cover, risk management or costal monitoring thematics. Two departments of CNES are involved in this plan. Strong connections will be naturally established between these three initiatives in order to optimize the use of TerraSAR-X data and the quality of the final reports.

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