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Ice-sheet velocity mapping: a combined interferometric and speckle-tracking approach

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The first and second RADARSAT Antarctic Mapping Missions (AMM-1 and -2) have now acquired interferometric synthetic aperture radar (SAR) over much of the ice sheet. The RADARSAT 24 day repeat cycle is nearly ideal for measuring slow ice motion (e.g. <100 m a-1), but application of SAR interferometry is limited in faster-moving areas. With a 1day repeat period, ERS-1/-2 tandem SAR data are much better matched to fast motion, but are not always available. Fortunately, several authors have demonstrated the ability to measure velocity in fast-moving areas by tracking SAR speckle from image to image, which works well even in the absence of visible features. While these estimates have intrinsically lower resolution and poorer accuracy than direct phase measurements, they serve well in areas where there are no data suitable for conventional interferometry. This paper describes algorithms I have developed for merging interferometric and speckle-tracking data from multiple swaths to form a single seamless mosaic of velocity. At each point in the mosaic, all the available data are combined to produce estimates of the velocity and the associated error. This technique is demonstrated using RADARSAT data collected over Lambert Glacier, Antarctica, during AMM-1 and-2.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 2002-01-01

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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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