|Abstract||Monitoring the condition of agricultural crops requires that soils and crop information is readily available throughout the growing season. Visible-infrared wavelengths are sensitive to variations in
crop and soil conditions. Although optical imagery can be used to map crop characteristics, cloud cover can impede the use of these data for operational monitoring. RADARSAT-1 can provide crop information, but because imagery is acquired in only one
transmit-receive polarization, multi-temporal data sets are required. Radars that acquire imagery in multiple polarizations, like RADARSAT-2, are likely to provide much more information on both crop and soil characteristics. |
In 1998 and 1999,
airborne C-band polarimetric synthetic aperture radar (SAR) imagery was acquired over two sites in Ontario (Canada). These data are currently being analyzed to assess what crop information polarimetric sensors, like RADARSAT-2, will provide for site
specific crop monitoring. In addition to airborne SAR, satellite and airborne optical images were acquired over these test sites. Soil moisture measurements and crop information were collected on corn, soybean and wheat fields during the airborne
acquisitions, to support interpretation of the remotely sensed images. Preliminary results indicate that although backscatter from corn fields saturates once crop growth is significant, multi-polarized linear and circular radar configurations do
provide some information on grain and soybean crop condition.