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The TanDEM-X DEM mosaicking: Fusion of multiple acquisitions using InSAR quality parameters

Gruber, Astrid and Wessel, Birgit and Martone, Michele and Roth, Achim (2016) The TanDEM-X DEM mosaicking: Fusion of multiple acquisitions using InSAR quality parameters. IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Applied Earth Observations and Remote Sensing, 9 (3), pp. 1047-1057. IEEE - Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. doi: 10.1109/JSTARS.2015.2421879. ISSN 1939-1404.

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Official URL: http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/xpl/RecentIssue.jsp?punumber=4609443


Since 2010, TanDEM-X and its twin satellite TerraSAR-X fly in a close orbit formation and form a single-pass synthetic aperture radar (SAR) interferometer. The formation was established to acquire a global high-precision digital elevation model (DEM) using SAR interferometry (InSAR). In order to achieve the required height accuracy of the TanDEM-X DEM, at least two global coverages have to be acquired. However, in difficult and mountainous terrain, up to five coverages are present. Here, acquisitions from ascending and descending orbits are needed to fill gaps and to overcome geometric limitations. Therefore, a strategy to properly combine the available height estimates is mandatory. The objective of this paper is the presentation of the operational TanDEM-X DEM mosaicking approach. In general, multiple InSAR DEM heights are combined by means of a weighted average with the height error as weight. Apart from this widely used mosaicking approach, one big challenge remains with the handling of larger height discrepancies between the input data, which are mainly caused by phase unwrapping errors, but also by temporal changes between acquisitions. In the case of inconsistencies, the TanDEM-X mosaicking approach performs a grouping into height levels. A priority concept is set up to evaluate the different groups of heights considering the number of DEMs and several InSAR quality parameters: the height error, the phase unwrapping method, and the height of ambiguity. This allows the identification of the most reliable height level for mosaicking. This fusion concept is verified on different test areas affected by phase unwrapping errors in flat and mountainous terrain as well as by height discrepancies in forests. The results show that the quality of the final TanDEM-X DEM mosaic benefits a lot from this mosaicking approach.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/97347/
Document Type:Article
Title:The TanDEM-X DEM mosaicking: Fusion of multiple acquisitions using InSAR quality parameters
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iDORCID Put Code
Wessel, BirgitUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-8673-2485134160587
Martone, MicheleUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-4601-6599UNSPECIFIED
Date:March 2016
Journal or Publication Title:IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Applied Earth Observations and Remote Sensing
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:No
Gold Open Access:No
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
Page Range:pp. 1047-1057
Publisher:IEEE - Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
Keywords:Digital elevation models (DEMs), image fusion, interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR), mosaicking, TanDEM-X
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Space
HGF - Program Themes:Earth Observation
DLR - Research area:Raumfahrt
DLR - Program:R EO - Earth Observation
DLR - Research theme (Project):R - Projekt TanDEM-X (old)
Location: Oberpfaffenhofen
Institutes and Institutions:German Remote Sensing Data Center > Land Surface
Deposited By: Wessel, Dr.-Ing. Birgit
Deposited On:18 Aug 2015 11:10
Last Modified:27 Nov 2023 14:00

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