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Instrument: X-SAR : X-Band Synthetic Aperture Radar
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Description
The objectives of the X-band Synthetic Aperature Radar (X-SAR) are to
provide all-weather monitoring of Earth's land and ocean surface to
provide data for studies of (1) vegetation extent and biomass
condition, (2) soil moisture and snow properties, (3) recent climate
change and tectonic activity, and (4) ocean wave spectra. The X-SAR is
designed to be operated in conjunction with the Spaceborne Imaging
Radar-C (SIR-C) on the same platform. The X-SAR, designed and built by
the German Aerospace Research Establishment (DLR) and sponsored by the
German and Italian governments, will operate at X-band (3.1-cm
wavelength or 9600 MHz) with VV polarization. The swath width is from
10 to 45 km at 25-km resolution with illumination angle of 15 to 60
degrees off-nadir. The X-SAR antenna has a fixed beamwidth of 5.8
degrees in elevation and 0.13 degrees in azimuth as opposed to the
phased array, multi-polarization antenna of SIR-C. The X-SAR was
flown on the Shuttle STS-59 in April 1994 and the STS-68 in
September/October 1994. See Jordan,R.L.,B.L.Huneycutt,and
M.Werner,"The SIR-C/X-SAR Synthetic Aperature Radar
System",Vol.79,No.6,June 1991.
For more information on SIR-C/XSAR including online images see the URL:
http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/sircxsar/