BackForwardInstrument:  SAR-S (NISAR)  

Instrument details
Acronym SAR-S (NISAR)
Full name SAR-S for the NASA-ISRO Synthetic Aperture Radar
Purpose High-resolution all-weather imagery of ocean and land, specially suited for soil moisture
Short description S-band frequency in the range 3.162-3.237 GHz. Several polarisation modes available: Single Pol: HH or VV; Dual Pol: HH/HV or VV/VH; and Compact Pol: RH/RV
Background New development
Scanning Technique Pushbroom, side looking (incidence angle 33-47 degrees), swath 240 km
Resolution Variable with the polarisation mode, 2 to 6 m
Coverage / Cycle Global in 12 days
Mass Power Data Rate

 

Providing Agency NASA
Instrument Maturity Flown on an R&D satellite
Utilization Period: ≥2022 to ≥2027
Last update: 2018-06-10
Detailed characteristics
Satellites this instrument is flying on

Note: a red tag indicates satellites no longer operational, a green tag indicates operational satellites, a blue tag indicates future satellites

Instrument classification
  • Earth observation instrument
  • Active and radio-occultation sensor
  • Imaging radar (SAR)
Mission objectives
Primary mission objectives
  • Biomass
  • Fraction of vegetated land
  • Land cover
  • Land surface topography
  • Oil spill cover
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Tentative Evaluation of Measurements

The following list indicates which measurements can typically be retrieved from this category of instrument. To see a full Gap Analysis by Variable, click on the respective variable.

Note: table can be sorted by clicking on the column headers
VariableRelevance for measuring this variableOperational limitationsExplanation
Biomass2 - very highIndex only.. Infrequent coverage.S-band sensitive to total biomass
Dominant wave direction5 - marginalInfrequent coverage.S-band SAR. Variable measured by spectral analysis of "imagettes"
Dominant wave period5 - marginalInfrequent coverage.S-band SAR. Variable measured by spectral analysis of "imagettes"
Fire fractional cover3 - highInfrequent coverage.S-band SAR. High resolution, for fire boundary detection
Fraction of vegetated land5 - marginalNo specific limitation.S-band SAR
Glacier cover1 - primaryLong time for mapping.S-band SAR for accurate boundary detection
Glacier motion2 - very highInfrequent coverage.S-band SAR for interferometry between images taken at time intervals
Glacier topography2 - very highLong time for mapping.S-band SAR for interferometry between images taken at time intervals
Ice sheet topography2 - very highLong time for mapping.S-band SAR for interferometry between images taken at time intervals
Land cover5 - marginalNo specific limitation.S-band SAR
Land surface topography2 - very highLong time for mapping.S-band SAR for interferometry between images taken at time intervals
Oil spill cover2 - very highInfrequent coverage.S-band SAR
Sea-ice cover1 - primaryNo specific limitation.S-band SAR
Sea-ice elevation5 - marginalNo specific limitation.S-band SAR. Sea ice elevation measured by interferometry
Sea-ice thickness5 - marginalChange detection only.S-band SAR. Sea ice elevation measured by interferometry. Thickness inferred by ice model
Sea-ice type3 - highNo specific limitation.S-band SAR. Type interpreted as age/roughness
Significant wave height5 - marginalHighly indirect.. Infrequent coverage.S-band SAR. Retrieved by spectral analysis of "imagettes". Boundary condition necessary for the retrieval
Snow water equivalent4 - fairChange detection only.. Infrequent coverage.S-band SAR. SWE is retrieved by grigging with data from ground networks
Soil moisture (in the roots region)2 - very highAffected by vegetation.. Infrequent coverage.S-band SAR
Soil moisture at surface2 - very highInfrequent coverage.S-band SAR
Soil type5 - marginalNo specific limitation.S-band SAR
Vegetation type5 - marginalNo specific limitation.S-band SAR
Wave directional energy frequency spectrum5 - marginalInfrequent coverage.S-band SAR. Variable measured by spectral analysis of "imagettes"