21 October 2014 A study on the use of passive microwave radiometry for the detection of buried objects and their associated hydrological changes
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Abstract
The detection of buried objects with remote sensing techniques mainly relies on thermal infrared, ground penetrating radar, and metal detectors. However, nowadays people also start to use low frequency passive microwave radiometry for the same purpose. The detection performance of passive microwave radiometry is influenced by the depth and size of the object, environmental factors, and soil properties. Soil moisture is a key variable here, due to its strong influence on the observed dielectric constant. Through digging activities will the hydrological conditions of the soil change significantly that can be detected by remotely sensing systems. A study was designed to examine the influence of the hydrological changes caused by the direct placement of an object in the ground. Simulations in a soil moisture model and field observations revealed the development of a wetter part above and a drier part underneath an object. The observations were converted to brightness temperatures with a coherent model in combination with a dielectric mixing model. Development of a drier area underneath an object generally increases the brightness temperature after a precipitation event. As a results are brightness temperature anomalies of low dielectric constant objects raised during the first 36 hours after a rain event. Ground observations of soil moisture and porosity revealed an increase in porosity and loss in soil moisture for the part that was excavated. Knowledge of past weather conditions could therefore improve buried object detection by passive microwave sensors.
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Robbert van de Ven, Richard de Jeu, Roland Haarbrink, "A study on the use of passive microwave radiometry for the detection of buried objects and their associated hydrological changes", Proc. SPIE 9239, Remote Sensing for Agriculture, Ecosystems, and Hydrology XVI, 923906 (21 October 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2067241; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2067241
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