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Semi-empirical calibration of the IEM backscattering model using radar images and moisture and roughness field measurements

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Abstract:

Estimating surface parameters by radar-image inversion requires the use of well-calibrated backscattering models. None of the existing models is capable of correctly simulating scatterometer or satellite radar data. We propose a semi-empirical calibration of the Integral Equation Model (IEM) backscattering model in order to better reproduce the radar backscattering coefficient over bare agricultural soils. As correlation length is not only the least accurate but also the most difficult to measure of the parameters required in the models, we propose that it be replaced by a calibration parameter that would be estimated empirically from experimental databases of radar images and field measurements. This calibration was carried out using a number of radar configurations with different incidence angles, polarization configurations, and radar frequencies. Using several databases, the relationship between the calibration parameter and the surface roughness was determined for each radar configuration. In addition, the effect of the correlation function shape on IEM performance was studied using the three correlation functions (exponential, fractal, and Gaussian). The calibrated version of the IEM was then validated using another independent set of experimental data. The results show good agreement between the backscattering coefficient provided by the radar systems and that simulated by the calibrated version of the IEM. This calibrated version of the IEM can be used in inversion procedures to retrieve surface roughness and/or moisture values from radar images.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/01431160310001654392

Affiliations: 1: Bureau de Recherches Géologiques et Minières (BRGM) ARN, 3 avenue C. Guillemin B.P. 6009 45060 Orléans cedex 2 France, Email: n.baghdadi@brgm.fr 2: CETP/CNRS 10/12 avenue de l'Europe 78140, Velizy France 3: CARTEL, Université de Sherbrooke Sherbrooke Québec Canada J1K 2R1

Publication date: September 1, 2004

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