BackForwardInstrument:  SAR-S (NovaSAR) 

Instrument details
Acronym SAR-S (NovaSAR)
Full name Synthetic Aperture Radar (S-band)
Purpose High-resolution all-weather multi-purpose imager for ocean, land and ice. Specific for soil moisture
Short description S-band SAR, frequency ~ 3.2 GHz. Polarimetric modes include single polar (HH, VV), and then by trading swath width and/or resolution, dual polar (any 2 from HH, VV, HV or VH) or tripolar (any 3 from HH, VV, HV or VH).
Background New development
Scanning Technique Side-looking, swath and resolution depending on operating mode (see table). Duty cycle: 2 min/orbit (800 km strips)
Resolution Depending on operating mode (see table)
Coverage / Cycle Depending on operating mode (see table)
Mass Power 100 W Data Rate

 

Providing Agency SSTL
Instrument Maturity Flown on an R&D satellite
Utilization Period: TBD
Last update: 2018-08-25
Detailed characteristics

Mode

Resolution

Incidence angles

Swath width

Average revisit times

1: ScanSAR

20 m

16-30º

50-100 km

4.4 d

2: Maritime Surveillance

30 m

48-73º

750 km

0.9 d

3: Stripmap

6 m

16-31º

13-20 km

3.2 d

4: ScanSAR Wide

30 m

15-32º

55-140 km

3.7 d

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
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
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"