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The use of polarisation in synthetic aperture radar.

Mancini, Pierluigi; (1995) The use of polarisation in synthetic aperture radar. Doctoral thesis (Ph.D), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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The role of Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) in remote sensing is of paramount importance. Classically, compared with optical imaging sensors it has two main advantages: the imaging capability independent of weather condition, and the spatial resolution independent of the satellite altitude. Recently the utilisation of airborne SAR has given the opportunity to exploit new instrument concepts. In particular, multifrequency and multipolarisation airborne SARs have shown that improved information about the electromagnetic and geometrical properties of the imaged surface can be obtained. The main objective of this thesis is to show the potential of polarisation information in SARs, and in particular in the use of the Covariance matrix as a second order descriptor for multipolarised SAR images. The relation of the eigenvalues and the eigenvectors of the Covariance matrix with the maximisation of the power backscattered from two areas with different scattering properties is demonstrated applying the Rayleigh maximisation principle. Both for the Gaussian and Gamma clutter models, the potential in obtaining texture information of the span polarimetric image from the knowledge of the eigenvalues of the Covariance matrix is shown. The developed analytical tools are validated with data from multifrequency and multipolarisation SAR airborne campaigns. The definition of a new descriptor of the unpolarised radiation content is introduced and its performance compared against the minimum eigenvalue of the Covariance matrix and the polarisation signature pedestal height. Critical instrument aspects such as range ambiguity contamination, signal-to-noise ratio and alternative orthogonal waveform techniques capable of improving the sensor polarisation performances are also analysed.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ph.D
Title: The use of polarisation in synthetic aperture radar.
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Thesis digitised by ProQuest.
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10108264
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