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Remote Sens. 2011, 3(6), 1266-1283; doi:10.3390/rs3061266

Estimating Surface Soil Moisture from TerraSAR-X Data over Two Small Catchments in the Sahelian Part of Western Niger

1,* , 1
1 CEMAGREF, UMR TETIS, 500 rue François Breton, 34093 Montpellier Cedex 5, France 2 SIRS, 59650 Villeneuve d’Ascq, France 3 Université de Reims Champagne Ardenne, GEGENA EA 3795, 51687 Reims, France 4 IRD, BIOEMCO, Niamey, Niger 5 CESBIO, 31401 Toulouse, France 6 BRGM, RNSC, 34000 Montpellier, France 7 Remote Sensing Centre, Lebanese National Council for Scientific Research, Beirut, Lebanon
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 22 April 2011 / Revised: 15 June 2011 / Accepted: 15 June 2011 / Published: 23 June 2011
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The objective of this study is to validate an approach based on the change detection in multitemporal TerraSAR images (X-band) for mapping soil moisture in the Sahelian area. In situ measurements were carried out simultaneously with TerraSAR-X acquisitions on two study sites in Niger. The results show the need for comparing the difference between the rainy season image and a reference image acquired in the dry season. The use of two images enables a reduction of the roughness effects. The soils of plateaus covered with erosion crusts are dry throughout the year while the fallows show more significant moisture during the rainy season. The accuracy on the estimate of soil moisture is about 2.3% (RMSE) in comparison with in situ moisture contents.
Keywords: soil moisture estimation; Sahel; TerraSAR-X; biological crust soil moisture estimation; Sahel; TerraSAR-X; biological crust
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Baghdadi, N.; Camus, P.; Beaugendre, N.; Issa, O.M.; Zribi, M.; Desprats, J.F.; Rajot, J.L.; Abdallah, C.; Sannier, C. Estimating Surface Soil Moisture from TerraSAR-X Data over Two Small Catchments in the Sahelian Part of Western Niger. Remote Sens. 2011, 3, 1266-1283.

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