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RSS FeedsRemote Sensing, Vol. 11, Pages 2739: Mapping Water Surface Elevation and Slope in the Mississippi River Delta Using the AirSWOT Ka-Band Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (Remote Sensing)

 
 

21 november 2019 20:00:10

 
Remote Sensing, Vol. 11, Pages 2739: Mapping Water Surface Elevation and Slope in the Mississippi River Delta Using the AirSWOT Ka-Band Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (Remote Sensing)
 




AirSWOT is an airborne Ka-band synthetic aperture radar, capable of mapping water surface elevation (WSE) and water surface slope (WSS) using single-pass interferometry. AirSWOT was designed as a calibration and validation instrument for the forthcoming Surface Water and Ocean Topography (SWOT) mission, an international spaceborne synthetic aperture radar mission planned for launch in 2022 which will enable global mapping of WSE and WSS. As an airborne instrument, capable of quickly repeating overflights, AirSWOT enables measurement of high frequency and fine scale hydrological processes encountered in coastal regions. In this paper, we use data collected by AirSWOT in the Mississippi River Delta and surrounding wetlands of coastal Louisiana, USA, to investigate the capabilities of Ka-band interferometry for mapping WSE and WSS in coastal marsh environments. We introduce a data-driven method to estimate the time-varying interferometric phase drift resulting from radar hardware response to environmental conditions. A system of linear equations based on AirSWOT measurements is solved for elevation bias and time-varying phase calibration parameters using weighted least squares. We observed AirSWOT WSE uncertainty of 12 cm RMS compared to in situ water level measurements when averaged over an area of 0.5 km 2 at incidence angles below 15 ? . At higher incidence angles, the observed AirSWOT elevation bias is possibly due to residual phase calibration errors or radar backscatter from vegetation. Elevation profiles along the Wax Lake Outlet river channel indicate AirSWOT can measure WSS over a 24 km distance with uncertainty below 0.3 cm/km, 8% of the true water surface slope as measured by in situ data. The data analysis and results presented in this paper demonstrate the potential of AirSWOT to measure water surface elevation and slope within highly dynamic and spatially complex coastal environments.


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19 viewsCategory: Geology, Physics
 
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