Nebula Public Library

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SAOCOM-CS bi-static modes for land applications

Programme Reference
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The project summarized here was conceived to support the definition of applications, products and user requirements, as well as the hardware design and ground processing design of a companion satellite mission which will carry aboard a "passive" radar working in tandem with the Argentinian L-band radar developed by CONAE and denoted as SAOCOM. The primary objective (i.e., science driver) of the SAOCOM companion satellite mission (SAOCOM-CS) is forest tomography, which will be carried out by exploiting small baselines between active and passive systems (order of km) changing with time. Conversely, this document summarizes the investigation carried out for different bistatic radar configurations (denoted as Bistatic-1, Bistatic- 2 and Specular), which are generally characterized by much larger spatial baselines (up to hundreds of km) and bistatic angles with very large components both in azimuth and in elevation. In the project the issues related to image focusing and image quality were firstly addressed. A theoretical investigation on the bistatic scattering of bare and vegetated soil provided also a general description of the scattering amplitude expected in different bistatic geometry to support the performance assessment during system design. The demonstration products (soil moisture and vegetation biomass) exploiting scattering intensity measurements were identified. The expected performances were predicted using electromagnetic models in any bistatic geometry, so that the selection of best system configurations (geometry, polarization) was finally possible. Examples of retrieval results on simulated data are also reported. Theoretical investigations were also used to predict the performances and to select the optimal baseline for interferometric applications (3-D deformation). A sketch of the InSAR data processing and multistatic InSAR product generation was given. As most of the conclusions were based on theoretical considerations, possible experimental activities to be carried out during the prosecution of mission preparation and before the launch were indicated

Executive summary