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Ground-based C-band tomographic profiling of a conifer forest stand

Morrison, K., Bennett, J. and Solberg, S. (2013) Ground-based C-band tomographic profiling of a conifer forest stand. International Journal of Remote Sensing, 34 (21). pp. 7838-7853. ISSN 0143-1161

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1080/01431161.2013.826836


We provide a demonstration of the new tomographic profiling (TP) technique, here applied to forestry for the first time. The portable ground-based synthetic aperture radar (GB-SAR) system was used to capture profiles of the vertical polarimetric backscattering patterns through a ∼7 m tall stand of Norway spruce trees. The TP scheme collects data as for normal SAR imaging, but with the antennae aligned in the along-track direction. Adaptive post-processing meant that each TP scan simultaneously captured along-track image transects over the incidence angle range 0°–60°. An important feature of the derived image products is that incidence angle is constant at every point within an image. The measured HH–VV height backscatter profiles were very similar, whilst the cross-/co-polarization ratio showed very little variation with height through the stand. Backscattering profiles showed closest agreement with the branch biomass distribution through the canopy, rather than with trunk or branch + trunk biomasses. Equivalent interferometric tree heights were estimated from the centre of mass of the backscatter-height distribution, which displayed increasing height with increasing incidence angle. There was no significant vertical separation between the cross- and co-polarization returns.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Science > School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences > Department of Meteorology
ID Code:73537
Publisher:Taylor & Francis

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