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Response of RADAR Backscatter at Multiple Frequencies and Polarizations to Changing Snow and Ice Properties on a Temperate Saline Lake

  • Author / Creator
    Beckers, Justin F.
  • Currently there is a lack of knowledge regarding the distribution of the mass of snow, or snow water equivalence, over land and ice. The proposed CoReH2O satellite mission aims to address this by launching the first coincident dual-frequency, dual-polarized Ku- and X- band Synthetic Aperture Radar. In the winters of 2008/09 and 2009/10, C-, X-, and Ku-band imagery retrieved from Envisat ASAR, TerraSAR-X and QuikSCAT were compared with repeated in-situ and autonomous measurements of snow and ice properties over Miquelon Lake, a saline lake in Alberta. Ku- and X-band backscatter increased with snow depth and SWE. Ku-band backscatter decreased with increasing snow wetness and brine volume. C- and X-band backscatter increased with snow wetness, brine volume and snow-ice formation but exhibited an unclear response to ice thickness. The co-varying snow and ice properties hampered interpretation of observed backscatter changes and will continue to complicate the retrieval of these properties.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    2012-06
  • Type of Item
    Thesis
  • Degree
    Master of Science
  • DOI
    https://doi.org/10.7939/R3H041
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
    English
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
    Master's
  • Department
    • Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
    • Haas, Christian (Earth & Atmospheric Sciences/Physics)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Hicks, Faye (Civil and Environmental Engineering)
    • Sharp, Martin (Earth and Atmospheric Sciences)