Precise estimation and correction of the Atmospheric Path Delay (APD) is needed to ensure sub-pixel accuracy of geocoded Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) products, in particular for the new generation of high resolution side-looking SAR satellite sensors (TerraSAR-X, COSMO/SkyMED). The present work aims to assess the performances of operational Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) Models as tools to routinely estimate the APD contribution, according to the specific acquisition beam of the SAR sensor for the selected scene on ground. The Regional Atmospheric Modeling System (RAMS) has been selected for this purpose. It is a finite-difference, primitive equation, three-dimensional non-hydrostatic mesoscale model, originally developed at Colorado State University [1]. In order to appreciate the improvement in target geolocation when accounting for APD, we need to rely on the SAR sensor orbital information. In particular, TerraSAR-X data are well-suited for this experiment, since recent studies have confirmed the few centimeter accuracy of their annotated orbital records (Science level data) [2]. A consistent dataset of TerraSAR-X stripmap images (Pol.:VV; Look side: Right; Pass Direction: Ascending; Incidence Angle: 34.0÷36.6 deg) acquired in Daunia in Southern Italy has been hence selected for this study, thanks also to the availability of six trihedral corner reflectors (CR) recently installed in the area covered by the imaged scenes and properly directed towards the TerraSAR-X satellite platform. The geolocation of CR phase centers is surveyed with cm-level accuracy using differential GPS (DGPS). The results of the analysis are shown and discussed. Moreover, the quality of the APD values estimated through NWP models will be further compared to those annotated in the geolocation grid (GEOREF.xml), in order to evaluate whether annotated corrections are sufficient for sub-pixel geolocation quality or not. Finally, the analysis will be extended to a limited number of COSMO/SkyMED data available over the area of interest in order to achieve preliminary indications on the quality of orbital records for the latter X-band constellation.

On the use of Numerical Weather Models for improving SAR geolocation accuracy

Chiaradia, M;Bruno, M F;
2013-01-01

Abstract

Precise estimation and correction of the Atmospheric Path Delay (APD) is needed to ensure sub-pixel accuracy of geocoded Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) products, in particular for the new generation of high resolution side-looking SAR satellite sensors (TerraSAR-X, COSMO/SkyMED). The present work aims to assess the performances of operational Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) Models as tools to routinely estimate the APD contribution, according to the specific acquisition beam of the SAR sensor for the selected scene on ground. The Regional Atmospheric Modeling System (RAMS) has been selected for this purpose. It is a finite-difference, primitive equation, three-dimensional non-hydrostatic mesoscale model, originally developed at Colorado State University [1]. In order to appreciate the improvement in target geolocation when accounting for APD, we need to rely on the SAR sensor orbital information. In particular, TerraSAR-X data are well-suited for this experiment, since recent studies have confirmed the few centimeter accuracy of their annotated orbital records (Science level data) [2]. A consistent dataset of TerraSAR-X stripmap images (Pol.:VV; Look side: Right; Pass Direction: Ascending; Incidence Angle: 34.0÷36.6 deg) acquired in Daunia in Southern Italy has been hence selected for this study, thanks also to the availability of six trihedral corner reflectors (CR) recently installed in the area covered by the imaged scenes and properly directed towards the TerraSAR-X satellite platform. The geolocation of CR phase centers is surveyed with cm-level accuracy using differential GPS (DGPS). The results of the analysis are shown and discussed. Moreover, the quality of the APD values estimated through NWP models will be further compared to those annotated in the geolocation grid (GEOREF.xml), in order to evaluate whether annotated corrections are sufficient for sub-pixel geolocation quality or not. Finally, the analysis will be extended to a limited number of COSMO/SkyMED data available over the area of interest in order to achieve preliminary indications on the quality of orbital records for the latter X-band constellation.
AGU Fall meeting 2013
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11589/25102
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