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Polarimetric Phase and Implications for Urban Classification

Abstract : The classification of urban environments poses significant challenges for polarimetric synthetic aperture radar (SAR), since rotated urban blocks violate the assumption of reflection symmetry held by many decomposition approaches. Vast sections of cities appear to be dominated by volume scattering due to the introduction of coherent depolarization. Attempts to model this slanted double bounce must contend with the fact that dihedrals rotated about the vertical axis do not support significant backscatter and require a rough ground surface to affect a return path. In this paper, the concept of an effective dihedral is introduced, with one plate coincident with the building wall and one plate associated with some ground facet, oriented so as to support double bounce. The rotation of this effective dihedral can be readily related to the polarization orientation angle and used to quantify co-pol and cross-pol phases. Theoretical results are confirmed with L-band and C-band polarimetric SAR imagery of San Francisco, as well as by broadband laboratory experiments with modeled buildings. In addition, the utility of using cross-pol phase to classify urban regions in the Los Angeles basin is demonstrated with ascending and descending dual-pol Radarsat data.
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Submitted on : Thursday, January 25, 2018 - 2:30:43 PM
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Donald Atwood, Laetitia Thirion-Lefevre. Polarimetric Phase and Implications for Urban Classification. IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, 2018, 56 (3), pp.1278 - 1289. ⟨10.1109/TGRS.2017.2750211⟩. ⟨hal-01692803⟩



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