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Higher-Order Permanent Scatterers Analysis


The permanent scatterers (PS) technique is a multi-interferogram algorithm for DInSAR analyses developed in the late nineties to overcome the difficulties related to the conventional approach, namely, phase decorrelation and atmospheric effects. The successful application of this technology to many geophysical studies is now pushing toward further improvements and optimizations. A possible strategy to increase the number of radar targets that can be exploited for surface deformation monitoring is the adoption of parametric super-resolution algorithms that can cope with multiple scattering centres within the same resolution cell. In fact, since a PS is usually modelled as a single pointwise scatterer dominating the background clutter, radar targets having cross-range dimension exceeding a few meters can be lost (at least in C-band datasets), due to geometrical decorrelation phenomena induced in the high normal baseline interferograms of the dataset. In this paper, the mathematical framework related to higher-order SAR interferometry is presented as well as preliminary results obtained on simulated and real data. It is shown how the PS density can be increased at the price of a higher computational load.

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Correspondence to Alessandro Ferretti.

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Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 International License ( ), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Ferretti, A., Bianchi, M., Prati, C. et al. Higher-Order Permanent Scatterers Analysis. EURASIP J. Adv. Signal Process. 2005, 609604 (2005).

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