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CRL/NASDA airborne SAR (Pi-SAR) observations of sea ice in the Sea of Okhotsk

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Multi-frequency, multi-polarization airborne synthetic aperture radar (SAR) observations of sea ice in the southern Sea of Okhotsk were carried out in February 1999 in conjunction with RADARSAT SAR observations. The final goal of this study is to clarify the backscattering characteristics and to understand the scattering mechanisms of sea ice in the Sea of Okhotsk by using microwave multiparametric SAR. The airborne SAR (Pi-SAR) has two frequencies (X- and L-band) and multi-polarization (HH, VV, HV, VH) with 1.5 m (X-band) and 3.0 m (L-band) resolution. It was developed by the Communications Research Laboratory (X-band) and the National Space Development Agency of Japan (L-band). We show the frequency dependence and polarization properties of radar backscattering from sea ice. We find that it is possible to distinguish ice types by comparing backscattering from sea ice in the X- and L-bands. Investigation of the polarization characteristics at X-band was very useful for detecting the thin-ice area (e.g. nilas and gray ice).

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2001

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  • The Annals of Glaciology is a peer-reviewed, thematic journal published 2 to 4 times a year by the International Glaciological Society (IGS). Publication frequency is determined and volume/issue numbers assigned by the IGS Council on a year-to-year basis and with a lead time of 3 to 4 years. The Annals of Glaciology is included in the ISI Science Citation Index from volume 50, number 50 onwards.

    Themes can be on any aspect of the study of snow and ice. Individual members can make a suggestion for a theme for an Annals issue to the Secretary General, who will forward it to the IGS Publications Committee. The IGS Publication Committee will make a recommendation for an individual themed Annals issue, together with a potential Annals Chief Editor for that issue, to IGS Council. The IGS Council will make the decision whether to proceed, taking into account the spread of topics and the overall capacity for publication of pages in Annals.

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