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Extracting digital elevation models from SAR data through independent component analysis

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This article illustrates findings about a new method for the extraction of digital elevation model (DEM) from interferograms of synthetic aperture radar (SAR) data, based on independent component analysis (ICA). This method is named InSAR-ICA, and its advantages are related to its capability in estimating topographical altitudes without taking into account any or sparse non-SAR data (e.g. ground-based or atmospheric parameters). This is especially useful in cases of mountainous regions, where large altitude changes over short distances and the presence of microclimates generally limit the possibility of DEM estimates by few SAR interferograms only. A comparison between the standard SRTM (Shuttle Radar Topographical Mission) elevations and those extracted by InSAR-ICA is carried out for the region of South Italy, Apennine Mountains. Results are interpreted in terms of the reliability of InSAR-ICA DEM estimates.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Mediterranean Agency for Remote Sensing and Environmental Control, Via Perlingieri 1, Benevento82100, Italy

Publication date: 2011-07-10

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