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Tight formation flying for an along-track SAR interferometer

Gill, Eberhard and Runge, Hartmut (2004) Tight formation flying for an along-track SAR interferometer. Acta Astronautica, 55 (3/9), pp. 473-485.

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Abstract

While space-borne synthetic aperture radar (SAR) has evolved into a mature technology over the past two decades, there is a growing interest in interferometric SAR applications. Especially along-track interferometry with its capability to resolve the velocity of on-ground objects and ocean currents is of high interest for scientific applications. The accuracy of the resolved velocity on ground scales directly with the along-track separation between adjacent SAR antennas. Since space vehicles are quite limited in size, a formation flying approach with two SAR instruments distributed onto two spacecraft thus appears to be an innovative approach to along-track SAR interferometry. In the framework of an ESA study, this paper discusses the potential benefits, drawbacks and problems associated with a close formation flight for an along-track interferometry SAR mission. To this end, the absolute and relative orbit reconstruction requirements for the SAR processing chain are derived from basic interferometric principles as well as appropriate baselines of the satellite formation in L-Band and X-Band. A discussion of potential space-borne navigation sensors is presented along with the accuracy of state-of-the-art relative orbit reconstruction. Finally, appropriate thrusters for formation acquisition and control are discussed together with approaches to formation flying guidance and control as well as fuel consumption.

Document Type:Article
Additional Information: LIDO-Berichtsjahr=2004,
Title:Tight formation flying for an along-track SAR interferometer
Authors:
AuthorsInstitution or Email of Authors
Gill, EberhardUNSPECIFIED
Runge, HartmutUNSPECIFIED
Date:2004
Journal or Publication Title:Acta Astronautica
Refereed publication:Yes
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
Volume:55
Page Range:pp. 473-485
Status:Published
Keywords:Satellite Formation Flight, Along Track Interferometer, SAR
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport (old)
HGF - Program:Space (old)
HGF - Program Themes:W EO - Erdbeobachtung
DLR - Research area:Space
DLR - Program:W EO - Erdbeobachtung
DLR - Research theme (Project):UNSPECIFIED
Location: Oberpfaffenhofen
Institutes and Institutions:Space Operations and Astronaut Training > Hauptabteilung Raumflugmissionen
Remote Sensing Technology Institute
Deposited By: elib DLR-Beauftragter
Deposited On:06 Feb 2006
Last Modified:14 Jan 2010 17:34

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