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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Use of Active and Passive Microwave Remote Sensing for Soil Moisture Estimation Through Corn

item O'Neill, Peggy - NASA
item Chauhan, Narinda - GEORGE WASHINGTON UNIV
item Jackson, Thomas

Submitted to: International Journal of Remote Sensing
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: July 3, 1996
Publication Date: N/A

Interpretive Summary: Microwave techniques for measuring soil moisture include both active and passive approaches, with each having distinct advantages. By using the two together, it may be possible to improve soil moisture estimation. Aircraft data collected as part of experiments conducted in Pennsylvania and Oklahoma were used here to investigate the potential of this approach. The analysis showed that by combining the two measurements soil moisture estimates were improved. The results provide important information for further research and experiment design.

Technical Abstract: L band radar data from both truck and aircraft sensors collected in several recent experiments were used to validate the performance of a vegetation scattering model in which discrete scatter random media techniques are employed to calculate vegetation transmissivity and scattering. These parameters were then used in a soil moisture prediction algorithm based on a radiative transfer approach utilizing aircraft passive microwave data from the L band PBMR and ESTAR radiometers. Soil moisture were predicted for several large corn fields which represented the densest vegetation canopies of all the test fields. Over the observed range in soil moisture (20%), the match of predicted to measured soil moisture was excellent, with an average absolute error of 2% by volume.

Last Modified: 4/22/2015
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