Vol. 5, No. 1, 129-136, 2006

Snow extent mapping in alpine areas using polarimetric SAR data
Audrey Martini, Jean-Pierre Dedieu, Laurent Ferro-Famil, Monique Bernier and Eric Pottier

This paper proposes one original technique to map the snow extent in the French Alps from SAR measurements using SIR-C fully polarimetric winter/summer data sets at L and C-bands. The method relies on a multi-frequency two-step approach. Basic natural media types, like surface and forest, are first discriminated over the scene under observation from a polarimetric analysis of summer measurements at L-band. Secondly, the presence of snow is then detected separately over each media type using the H-A-a polarimetric decomposition theorem. An original PCVE (polarimetric contrast variation enhancement) procedure provides optimal emission/reception polarisation states that maximise the C-band winter to summer response of snow-covered areas. The results are compared to Landsat optical images acquired simultaneously.

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Submitted: 23 Feb 2005
Revised: 03 Nov 2005
Accepted: 27 Feb 2006
Published: 25 Apr 2006

Martini A, J-P Dedieu, L Ferro-Famil, M Bernier & E Pottier, 2006. Snow extent mapping in alpine areas using polarimetric SAR data. EARSeL eProceedings, 5(1): 129-136


EARSeL European Association of Remote Sensing Laboratories, Strasbourg, France


BIS Library and Information System, Carl von Ossietzky University of Oldenburg


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