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Sensors 2008, 8(12), 7715-7735; doi:10.3390/s8127715

Assessment of Polarimetric SAR Interferometry for Improving Ship Classification based on Simulated Data

1,2,*  and 1
1 Remote Sensing Laboratory, UPC, C Jordi Girona, 1-3, Campus Nord, E-08034, Barcelona, Spain 2 GMV Aerospace and Defense, S.A., C Balmes, 268-270, 5th floor, E-08006, Barcelona, Spain
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 16 June 2008 / Revised: 17 November 2007 / Accepted: 27 November 2008 / Published: 2 December 2008
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR))
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This paper uses a complete and realistic SAR simulation processing chain, GRECOSAR, to study the potentialities of Polarimetric SAR Interferometry (POLInSAR) in the development of new classification methods for ships. Its high processing efficiency and scenario flexibility have allowed to develop exhaustive scattering studies. The results have revealed, first, vessels’ geometries can be described by specific combinations of Permanent Polarimetric Scatterers (PePS) and, second, each type of vessel could be characterized by a particular spatial and polarimetric distribution of PePS. Such properties have been recently exploited to propose a new Vessel Classification Algorithm (VCA) working with POLInSAR data, which, according to several simulation tests, may provide promising performance in real scenarios. Along the paper, explanation of the main steps summarizing the whole research activity carried out with ships and GRECOSAR are provided as well as examples of the main results and VCA validation tests. Special attention will be devoted to the new improvements achieved, which are related to simulations processing a new and highly realistic sea surface model. The paper will show that, for POLInSAR data with fine resolution, VCA can help to classify ships with notable robustness under diverse and adverse observation conditions.
Keywords: POLInSAR; Ship Classification; SAR Simulation; Coherent Target Decompositions POLInSAR; Ship Classification; SAR Simulation; Coherent Target Decompositions
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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Margarit, G.; Mallorqui, J.J. Assessment of Polarimetric SAR Interferometry for Improving Ship Classification based on Simulated Data. Sensors 2008, 8, 7715-7735.

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