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Bistatic SAR mapping of ocean-wave spectra
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  • Marcel Kleinherenbrink,
  • Paco López-Dekker,
  • Frédéric Nouguier,
  • Bertrand Chapron
Marcel Kleinherenbrink

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Paco López-Dekker
Frédéric Nouguier
Bertrand Chapron


Earth Explorer 10 mission Harmony will consist of two satellites that fly in formation with Sentinel-1. It will operate as a multistatic radar in which Sentinel-1 transmits signals and all three satellites receive signals from different lines-of-sight. To prepare for Harmony and other possible future bistatic missions, transforms are derived to map the ocean-wave spectrum into bistatic synthetic aperture radar (SAR) spectra. The SAR mapping follows the standard derivation using the multi-dimensional characteristic function, but with adjustments for the modulation transfer functions compared to the monostatic case. This paper focuses on the SAR modulations caused by velocity bunching as it is the dominant distortion mechanism. We argue that a multistatic system, such as Harmony, leads to an inversion that constrains the real aperture radar (RAR) response on a scene-by-scene basis. A benefit of having additional receivers for wave-spectra estimation is that the three lines-of-sight enables to capture a larger fraction of the wave spectrum. Improvements are especially expected in high wind speed conditions such as tropical cyclones, where large energetic surface motions strongly deteriorate the (azimuth) resolution of the SAR data. Enhanced directional wave spectral characteristics will further help to improve the interpretation of the new bistatic Harmony high-resolution scatter and Doppler combined directional measurements .
20 Dec 2023Submitted to TechRxiv
22 Dec 2023Published in TechRxiv