Tor Vergata Earth Observation Laboratory

Experimental and Model Investigation on Radar Classification Capability

P. Ferrazzoli, L. Guerriero, and G. Schiavon



The capability of multifrequency polarimetric synthetic aperture radar (SAR) to discriminate among nine vegetation classes is shown using both experimental data and model simulations. The experimental data were collected by the multifrequency polarimetric AIRSAR at the Dutch Flevoland site and the Italian Montespertoli site. Simulations are carried out using an electromagnetic model, developed at Tor Vergata University, Rome, Italy, which computes microwave vegetation scattering. The classes have been defined on the basis of geometrical differences among vegetation species, leading to different polarimetric signatures. It is demonstrated that, for each class, there are some combinations of frequencies and polarizations producing a significant separability. On the basis of this background, a simple, hierarchical parallelepiped algorithm is proposed.

Index Terms—Classification, scattering model, radar polarimetry, synthetic aperture radar, vegetation mapping

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