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Open AccessArticle

Improving the Topside Profile of Ionosonde with TEC Retrieved from Spaceborne Polarimetric SAR

1
Qian Xuesen Laboratory of Space Technology, China Academy of Space Technology, Haidian district, Beijing 100094, China
2
National Key Laboratory of Electromagnetic Environment, China Research Institute of Radiowave Propagation, Qingdao 266107, China
3
School of Physics and Optoelectronic Engineering, Xidian University, Xi’an 710071, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sensors 2019, 19(3), 516; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19030516
Received: 14 December 2018 / Revised: 23 January 2019 / Accepted: 23 January 2019 / Published: 26 January 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) Techniques and Applications)
Signals from spaceborne polarimetric synthetic aperture radar will suffer from Faraday rotations when they propagate through the ionosphere, especially those at L-band or lower frequencies, such as signals from the Phased Array type L-band Synthetic Aperture Radar (PALSAR). For this reason, Faraday rotation compensation should be considered. On the other hand, Faraday rotation could also be retrieved from distorted echoes. Moreover, combining Faraday rotation with the radar parameters and the model of magnetic field, we could derive the total electron content (TEC) along the signal path. Benefiting from the high spatial resolution of the SAR system, TEC obtained from PALSAR could be orders of magnitude higher in spatial resolution than that from GPS. Besides, we demonstrated that the precision of TEC from PALSAR is also much higher than that from GPS. With the precise TEC available, we could fuse it with data from other ionosphere detection devices to improve their performances. In this paper, we adopted it to help modify the empirically modeled topside profile of ionosonde. The results show that the divergence between the modified profile and the referenced incoherent scattering radar profile reduced by about 30 percent when compared to the original ionosonde topside profile. View Full-Text
Keywords: polarimetric synthetic aperture radar; total electron content; ionospheric electron density distribution polarimetric synthetic aperture radar; total electron content; ionospheric electron density distribution
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MDPI and ACS Style

Wang, C.; Guo, W.; Zhao, H.; Chen, L.; Wei, Y.; Zhang, Y. Improving the Topside Profile of Ionosonde with TEC Retrieved from Spaceborne Polarimetric SAR. Sensors 2019, 19, 516.

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