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Amazon High Flood JERS-1 L-Band SAR Image Mosaic


The L-band HH image mosaic below from the NASDA/JAXA JERS-1 SAR has a pixel spacing of 3 arcseconds (about 100 m). It was acquired during mid-1996, during the (mostly) high flood season of the Amazon river. The imagery has been enhanced to emphasize the backscatter signature of inundated wetlands. This version of the image mosaic has been corrected for orthorectification errors by Yongwei Sheng, and Douglas E. Alsdorf (Ohio State University).
Black areas in this image generally correspond to open water, dark grey to low vegetation, grey to forest or shrublands, and light grey to white to inundated forests or shrublands, or to urban areas.
The entire Amazon Basin, from the Atlantic to the Pacific, was acquired in a single sweep during the generally low flood time of the Amazon River in September - December 1995. This portion of the data set covers an area of about 8 million km2 comprising some 2000 NASDA frame images. The same area was covered again in May - August 1996, during a high flood period of the Amazon river.

The Global Rain Forest Mapping project (GRFM) was an effort led by the National Space Development Agency of Japan/Earth Observation Research Center (Now called the JAXA - Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) (NASDA EORC), in collaboration with the NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), the Institute of Environment and Sustainability of the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission (JRC/IES), the Alaska Satellite Facility (ASF), the Earth Remote Sensing Data Analysis Center of Japan (ERSDAC) and the Remote Sensing Technology Center of Japan (RESTEC), with significant input also from the Unversity of California Santa Barbara (UCSB), the Brazilian National Institute for Space Research (INPE) and the National Institute for Research of the Amazon (INPA). The project goals were to acquire spatially and temporally contiguous L-band Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) data sets over the tropical belt of the Earth using the Japanese Earth Resources Satellite (JERS-1), and to generate semi-continental scale, 100 m resolution, image mosaics to be provided for research and educational purposes world wide. This project was divided into three geographical regions : South and Central America, Equatorial Africa, and South-East Asia, including northern Australia. Each region was observed at least once between September 1995 and February 1997. In total, more than 13,000 SAR scenes were acquired.

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Link to low flood GRFM SAR image mosaic

For more information about the GRFM project, please see Rosenqvist A.; Shimada M.; Chapman B.; Freeman A.; De Grandi G.; Saatchi S.; Rauste Y., "The Global Rain Forest Mapping project - A review ", International Journal of Remote Sensing, 2000, Vol. 21, No. 6&7, pp. 1375-1387.
A Global Rain Forest Mapping project Special Issue of the International Journal of Remote Sensing was published in April 2002 (IJRS Vol. 23, No. 7)
For more information about how this image mosaic was orthorectified, please see Yongwei Sheng; Alsdorf, D.E.; , "Automated georeferencing and orthorectification of Amazon basin-wide SAR mosaics using SRTM DEM data," Geoscience and Remote Sensing, IEEE Transactions on , vol.43, no.8, pp. 1929- 1940, Aug. 2005

Images Copyright (c) 1992-1998 NASDA/MITI
Courtesy of the Global Rain Forest Mapping (GRFM) project
The JERS-1 SAR data, images and text are only intended for scientific and/or educational use. Any other use is prohibited under the terms of the NASDA/MITI copyright.
If you wish to publish these images for scientific or educational purposes, no permission is required and there is no charge. Please acknowledge the origin of the data by adding "Courtesy of GRFM, (c) NASDA/MITI" below any image published.
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