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Remote Sensing


This paper describes an automatic mosaicking algorithm for creating large-scale mosaic maps of forest height. In contrast to existing mosaicking approaches through using SAR backscatter power and/or InSAR phase, this paper utilizes the forest height estimates that are inverted from spaceborne repeat-pass cross-pol InSAR correlation magnitude. By using repeat-pass InSAR correlation measurements that are dominated by temporal decorrelation, it has been shown that a simplified inversion approach can be utilized to create a height-sensitive measure over the whole interferometric scene, where two scene-wide fitting parameters are able to characterize the mean behavior of the random motion and dielectric changes of the volume scatterers within the scene. In order to combine these single-scene results into a mosaic, a matrix formulation is used with nonlinear least squares and observations in adjacent-scene overlap areas to create a self-consistent estimate of forest height over the larger region. This automated mosaicking method has the benefit of suppressing the global fitting error and, thus, mitigating the “wallpapering” problem in the manual mosaicking process. The algorithm is validated over the U.S. state of Maine by using InSAR correlation magnitude data from ALOS/PALSAR and comparing the inverted forest height with Laser Vegetation Imaging Sensor (LVIS) height and National Biomass and Carbon Dataset (NBCD) basal area weighted (BAW) height. This paper serves as a companion work to previously demonstrated results, the combination of which is meant to be an observational prototype for NASA’s DESDynI-R (now called NISAR) and JAXA’s ALOS-2 satellite missions.







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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.