Approximately, 30% of the Sentinel-1 (S-1) swath over land is imaged with incidence angles higher than 40◦. Still, the interplay among the scattering mechanisms taking place at such a high incidence and their implications on the backscatter information content is often disregarded. This article investigates, through an experimental and numerical study, the S-1 sensitivity to the surface soil moisture (SSM) over agricultural fields observed at low (∼33◦) and high (∼43◦) incidence angles and quantifies the impact of the incidence angle on the SSM retrieval accuracy. The study sites are the Apulian Tavoliere (Italy) and REd de MEDición de la HUmedad del Suelo (REMEDHUS) (Spain), which are both instrumented with a hydrologic network continuously measuring SSM. At low incidence angles, results confirm that for crops such as wheat and barley, dominated in C-band by surface scattering, there exists a good sensitivity of S-1 VV to SSM. At high incidence angles, the sensitivity to SSM holds through the combination of the soil attenuated and double bounce scattering. Conversely, over crops dominated by volume scattering, such as sugar beet, the S-1 VV signal is not correlated with the in situ SSM observations, neither at low nor at high incidence. For all the crops, the sensitivity of S-1 to SSM in VH is found significantly lower than in VV. The impact of the incidence angle on the SSM retrieval has been studied with a recursive algorithm based on a short-term change detection approach. An upper and lower bounds for the worsening of the S-1 VV retrieval performance at far versus near range

Sentinel-1 Sensitivity to Soil Moisture at High Incidence Angle and the Impact on Retrieval Over Seasonal Crops

Guarnieri, Andrea Virgilio Monti
2021-01-01

Abstract

Approximately, 30% of the Sentinel-1 (S-1) swath over land is imaged with incidence angles higher than 40◦. Still, the interplay among the scattering mechanisms taking place at such a high incidence and their implications on the backscatter information content is often disregarded. This article investigates, through an experimental and numerical study, the S-1 sensitivity to the surface soil moisture (SSM) over agricultural fields observed at low (∼33◦) and high (∼43◦) incidence angles and quantifies the impact of the incidence angle on the SSM retrieval accuracy. The study sites are the Apulian Tavoliere (Italy) and REd de MEDición de la HUmedad del Suelo (REMEDHUS) (Spain), which are both instrumented with a hydrologic network continuously measuring SSM. At low incidence angles, results confirm that for crops such as wheat and barley, dominated in C-band by surface scattering, there exists a good sensitivity of S-1 VV to SSM. At high incidence angles, the sensitivity to SSM holds through the combination of the soil attenuated and double bounce scattering. Conversely, over crops dominated by volume scattering, such as sugar beet, the S-1 VV signal is not correlated with the in situ SSM observations, neither at low nor at high incidence. For all the crops, the sensitivity of S-1 to SSM in VH is found significantly lower than in VV. The impact of the incidence angle on the SSM retrieval has been studied with a recursive algorithm based on a short-term change detection approach. An upper and lower bounds for the worsening of the S-1 VV retrieval performance at far versus near range
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11311/1166705
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