Radar remote sensing 

About the course: 

  • FYS8810 “Radar remote sensing” (PhD level, but also appropriate for MSc-students, 10 ECTs for registered)
  • The course will give the theoretical foundations of  important aspects of radar remote sensing, and provide new students in the field  a sufficient introductory understanding  to explore specific applications in more detail.
  • Free course
  • Duration: 5 days/25 lectures, plus project work.
  • Dates: 25-29 January 2016
  • Assessment: Project report, plus oral exam.
  • Venue: UiT
  • Course responsible: Professor Torbjørn Eltoft
  • Organizer: CIRFA, Department of Physics and Technology, UiT
  • Course credits: PhD and Master’s students from outside UiT will have to apply for credits at their home institutions. We will provide course certificates. UiT students attending will receive a separate form to be submitted for course approval.

Expected background: Fundamentals of EM waves, fundamental signal & image processing, and statistics. (One lecture = 45 minutes).


  1. Basic EM theory (4 lectures – TE)
    1. EM wave description
    2. Wave interaction with matter
    3. Wave polarization
    4. Rough surface scattering
  2. Introduction to radar (3 lectures – HJ)
    1. Basic radar principle
    2. Antennas
    3. Radar equation
  3. SAR image formation (4 lectures – YL)
    1. Foundations of signal processing
    2. Basic SAR imaging principles
    3. Overview of SAR image modes
    4. Corrections and calibrations
  4. Speckle statistics (2 lectures – TE)
    1. Statistics of basic radar parameters
    2. Texture models
    3. Speckle filtering
  5. Image segmentation and classification (3 lectures – APD)
    1. Bayesian classifiers
    2. Neural networks
    3. Feature extraction
  6. Principle of scatterometry and altimetry (1 lecture – HJ)
  7. Basic RAR polarimetry (1 lecture – TE)
  8. Basic interferometry (1 lectures – TG)
  9. Applications: Sea Ice (2 lecture – WD)
  10. Application: Ocean (1 lecture – HJ)
  11. Application: Oil spill (1 lecture – SS)
  12. Interpretation: Projects


Textbooks:     Oliver & Quegan: “Understanding Synthetic Aperture Radar Images”

Richards: “Remote Sensing with Imaging Radar”

Lee & Pottier: “Polarimetric Radar Imaging: From Basics to Applications”


The course will be counting as a 10 ECTs, and accepted as part of the theoretical component in a PhD degree.