Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
Appears in Collections:Biological and Environmental Sciences eTheses
Title: Quad polarimetric synthetic aperture radar analysis of icebergs in Greenland and Svalbard
Author(s): Bailey, Johnson
Supervisor(s): Marino, Armando
Akbari, Vahid
Spyrakos, Evangelos
Keywords: SAR
synthetic aperture radar
remote sensing
earth observation
Issue Date: 8-Aug-2022
Publisher: University of Stirling
Abstract: Polarimetric synthetic aperture radar (PolSAR) has been widely used in ocean and cryospheric applications. This is because, PolSAR can be used in all-day operations and in areas of cloud cover, and therefore can provide valuable large-scale monitoring in polar regions, which is very helpful to shipping and offshore maritime operations. In the last decades, attention has turned to the potential of PolSAR to detect icebergs in the Arctic since they are a major hazard to vessels. However, there is a substantial lack of literature exploring the potentialities of PolSAR and the understanding of iceberg scattering mechanisms. Additionally, it is not known if high resolution PolSAR can be used to detect icebergs smaller than 120 metres. This thesis aims to improve the knowledge of the use of PolSAR scattering mechanisms of icebergs, and detection of small icebergs. First, an introduction to PolSAR is outlined in chapter two, and monitoring of icebergs is presented in chapter three. The first data chapter (Chapter 4) is focused on developing a multi-scale analysis of icebergs using parameters from the Cloude-Pottier and the Yamaguchi decompositions, the polarimetric span and the Pauli scattering vector. This method is carried out using ALOS-2 PALSAR quad polarimetric L-band SAR on icebergs in Greenland. This approach outlines the good potential for using PolSAR for future iceberg classification. One of the main important outcomes is that icebergs are composed by a combination of single targets, which therefore may require a more complex way of processing SAR data to properly extract physical information. In chapter five, the problem of detecting icebergs is addressed by introducing six state-of-the-art detectors previously applied to vessel monitoring. These detectors are the Dual Intensity Polarisation Ratio Anomaly Detector (iDPolRAD), Polarimetric Notch Filter (PNF), Polarimetric Matched Filter (PMF), reflection symmetry (sym), Optimal Polarimetric Detector (OPD) and the Polarimetric Whitening Filter (PWF). Cloude-Pottier entropy, and first and third eigenvalues (eig1 and eig3) of the coherency matrix are also utilised as parameters for comparison. This approach uses the same ALOS-2 dataset, but also evaluates detection performance in two scenarios: icebergs in open ocean, and in sea ice. Polarimetric modes (quad-pol, dual-pol, and single intensities) are also considered for comparison. Currently it is very difficult to detect icebergs less than 120 metres in length using this approach, due to the scattering mechanisms of icebergs and sea ice being very similar. However, it was possible to obtain detection performances of the OPD and PWF, which both showed a Probability of Detection (PF) of 0.99 when the Probability of False Alarms (PF) was set to 10-5 in open ocean. Similarly, in dual pol images, the PWF gave the best performance with a PD of 0.90. Results in sea ice found eig3 to be the best detector with a PD of 0.90 while in dual-pol mode, iDPolRAD gave a PD of 0.978. Single intensity detector performance found the HV channel gave the best detection with a PD of 0.99 in open ocean and 0.87 in sea ice. In the previous two approaches, only satellite data is used. However, in chapter six, data from a ground-based Ku-band Gamma Portable Radio Interferometer (GPRI) instrument is introduced, providing images that are synchronised with the satellite acquisitions. In this approach, the same six detectors are applied to three multitemporal RADARSAT-2 quad pol C-band SAR images on icebergs in Kongsfjorden, Svalbard to evaluate the detection performance within a changing fjord environment. As before, we also make use of Cloude-Pottier entropy, eig1 and eig3. Finally, we evaluate the target-to-clutter ratio (TCR) of the icebergs and check for correlation between the backscattering coefficients and the iceberg dimension. The results obtained from this thesis present original additions to the literature that contributes to the understanding of PolSAR in cryospheric applications. Although these methods are applied to PolSAR and ground-based radar on vessels, they have been applied for the first time on icebergs in this thesis. To summarise, the main findings are that icebergs cannot be represented as single or partial targets, but they do exhibit a collection of single targets clustered together. This result leads to the fact that entropy is not sufficient as a parameter to detect icebergs. Detection results show that the OPD and PWF detectors perform best in an open ocean setting and using quad-pol mode. These results are degraded in dual-pol mode, while single intensity detection is best in the HV cross polarisation channel. When these detectors are applied to the RADARSAT-2 in Svalbard, the OPD and PWF detectors also perform best with PD values ranging between 0.5-0.75 for a PF of 0.01-0.05. However, the sea ice present in the fjord degrades performance across all detectors. Correlation plots with iceberg size show that a regression is not straightforward and Computer Vision methodologies may work best for this.
Type: Thesis or Dissertation

This item is protected by original copyright

Items in the Repository are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.

The metadata of the records in the Repository are available under the CC0 public domain dedication: No Rights Reserved

If you believe that any material held in STORRE infringes copyright, please contact providing details and we will remove the Work from public display in STORRE and investigate your claim.