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32nd International Union of Radio Science General Assembly & Scientific Symposium * Montreal, Canada * 19-27 August 2017 Home Page

Scientific Program - Commission F

Commission F Chair:
Dr. Simonetta Paloscia;

Commission F - Tutorial

Dr. Luca Baldini - "Modeling Rain Medium for Weather Radar and Propagation"

Convener: Simonetta Paloscia

Abstract: Modeling rain for weather radar and propagation applications is generally accomplished through modeling the drop size distribution (DSD) and its variability and drop shapes. The DSD is defined to be the number of drops per unit volume of air and per unit of drop diameter interval and often is modeled with a three-parameter gamma distribution. Instruments called ‘disdrometers' can measure the diameter distribution of drops reaching the ground, from which volume DSD are derived. On the other hand, active instruments, such as vertical profilers or weather radar can estimate DSD aloft based on different measurement principles. From measured or theoretical distribution of DSD, using electromagnetic simulation models, radar and propagation variables can be obtained. Obviously, measured distributions can be considered as more representative of the natural variability of rain in a given location than theoretically derived distributions, but are affected by different sources of errors. The mpact of DSDs, estimated by different instruments or theoretically derived, on weather radar retrievals or in predicting propagation effects will be analyzed.

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Commission F - "Microwave Remote Sensing of the Cryosphere"

Conveners: Martti Hallikainen, Jianchen Shi

Global information on the extent and characteristics of snow and ice can best be acquired by remote sensing. This session will focus on new scientific results obtained by using microwave, and joint microwave/optical methods. Topics will comprise physical models and retrieval algorithms, field experiments for validation purposes, and the use of data from advanced spaceborne and airborne sensors. Contributions related to the use of remotely sensed snow and ice products for climate change and regional comparative studies are also welcome.

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Commission F - "Millimeter-Wave Propagation and Remote Sensing"

Convener: Al Gasiewski

The progress in observation and data inversion techniques, as well as transceiver technology from radio frequencies to the higher microwave frequencies, has generated increased interest in using the millimeter-wave spectrum (i.e., frequencies above 30 GHz) for remote sensing. This session focuses on new developments in millimeter-wave propagation models and experiments, including the effects of reflection, refraction, emission and scintillation, along with their application in passive and active remote sensing. Passive systems for remote sensing include atmospheric sounders, surface imagers and path-dependent transmissometers that can be realized by using real aperture antennas, aperture synthesis or interferometers. Active systems for remote sensing include monostatic, bistatic, and multistatic radars, as well as, all forms of phased-, and digitally beamformed arrays and synthetic aperture systems.

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Commission F - "Remote Sensing from Nano-Satellites"

Conveners: Steven C. Reising , Jaan Praks.

The use of nano-satellites to enable rapid access to space has grown exponentially in the past 3-5 years. In particular, CubeSats were introduced in 1999 as an educational satellite platform consisting of one or more units "U" of 10 cm cubes. As of the end of 2015, more than 425 CubeSats had been launched by 36 countries. CubeSats were originally used as teaching tools and for demonstration of space technology. However, rapid maturation of commercially-available nano-satellite technology and fast "fly-learn-refly" cycles have allowed CubeSats to produce high-value science, including remote sensing of the Earth’s environment. In fact, more than 80% of all science-focused CubeSats have been launched from 2012 to 2016. Nano-satellites generally benefit from rapid development cycles from funding to readiness to launch as well as low-cost launch opportunities as secondary payloads on larger rockets (e.g. free non-commercial U.S. launches provided by NASA’s CubeSat Launch Initiative). In particular, nano-satellite constellations can provide rapid revisit times, e.g. for sensing dynamic processes in the Earth’s atmosphere, including temperature, humidity, precipitation and cloud properties.

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Commission F - "Remote Sensing Measurements of Precipitation"

Conveners: V. Chandrasekar, L. Baldini

Remote Sensing of precipitation is an active and vibrant field with numerous accomplishments resulting in practical applications such as world wide deployment of weather radars, in-situ monitoring devices, space borne radars and radiometers for observation of precipitation. Numerous advancements are being made every day evidenced by the research advancement and development of new instruments. This session will feature, papers devoted to remote sensing of precipitation ranging from theoretical models of precipitation, all the way to advanced instruments such as multiple polarization radar networks and space borne radiometer and radar observations of precipitation as well as retrieval algorithms. Papers are also solicited sharing observations from field experiments monitoring precipitation.

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Commission F - "Outdoor Propagation and Channel Modeling in Built-Up Areas, with Special Interest in the Effects of Vegetation"

Conveners: Robert Bultitude, Saúl A. Torrico

Session topics: Radiowave propagation and channel modelling for radio communications through vegetation, in vegetated residential environments, in urban environments with and without isolated trees, in other vegetated and built-up areas, scattering from trees, reflections and scattering from buildings, and the dynamic channel effects of moving terminals and vegetation moving in wind. Session The objective of the session is to provide a forum for the discussion and dissemination of results from the latest research on radiowave propagation and radio channel modelling for wireless applications in vegetated and build-up areas. A deeper understanding of these topics is considered a requirement, since present and future generation of wireless applications will depend heavily on the interaction of buildings/houses and vegetation. This session will present that opportunity to gather researchers in one session and exchange ideas on related current problems.

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Commission F - "Microwave Remote Sensing of Vegetation"

Conveners: Simonetta Paloscia, Mehmet Kurum

Vegetation biomass estimates are important at both global and local scales for climate change studies and carbon cycle monitoring. Passive and active microwave sensors can contribute significantly to these goals due to their high sensitivity to water content in the observed bodies and their independence on sunlight. Although microwave radiometers from space are hampered by the coarse spatial resolution, the large swath allows daily observations of the same area, whereas SAR systems provide very precise local measurements, but with somewhat limited revisit time. Multiple observation frequencies are an advantage for investigating different layers of vegetation: from the surface (Ku and X bands) to the ground beneath crops (C and L bands), by thus taking also into account the contribution from soil. In this way, different goals can be achieved including land cover classification and the generation of vegetation biomass and soil moisture maps. Daily progress is being made evidenced by the research advancement in modeling complicated media and development of new instruments.

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Commission F - "Microwave Remote Sensing of Vegetation and Terrestrial Snow"

Conveners: Simonetta Paloscia, Jianchen Shi, Paolo Pampaloni

Vegetation biomass and snow cover are two important parameters of the water cycle and are involved in many vital processes related climate change studies and natural disaster monitoring. Passive and active microwave sensors provide a significant contribution to the monitoring of these two factors, although with different spatial resolutions and revisit times. Multiple observation frequencies are an advantage for investigating various characteristics of the Earth's surface with different sensitivity: higher frequencies (i.e. Ka, Ku, and X bands) are mainly sensitive to snow cover and depth and to agricultural crop biomass, whereas lower frequencies (i.e. C and L bands) to forest biomass and soil moisture under the vegetation.

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Commission F - "Radio-Frequency Interference (RFI) in Passive Microwave Remote Sensing"

Conveners: Paolo de Matthaeis, Yann Kerr

Passive microwave remote sensing is under increasing threat from unwanted man-made emissions, referred to as Radio Frequency Interference or RFI. Focusing on Earth surface applications, this session will include presentations on the current status of RFI contamination worldwide, RFI impact on science results, detection techniques, current issues in spectrum management and protection of passive remote sensing bands, and future steps to be taken to improve the situation.

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Commission F - "Remote Sensing of Sea Surface Salinity"

Conveners: Roger Lang, David Le Vine

Salinity is important for understanding ocean circulation, climate and the global water cycle. Three recent L-band instruments, SMOS, Aquarius and SMAP, have demonstrated the potential for measuring surface salinity from space. But there is much to be learned such as how best to correct for surface roughness, radiation from the Sun and the effects of rain. This session will focus on issues of calibration and the retrieval algorithm including status of salinity retrievals from the three instruments.

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Commission F "Microwave Sensing of Soil Moisture"

Conveners: Yann Kerr, Simon Yueh

Recent advances in Passive microwave remote sensing over land at low frequencies: from modelling to applications and from forests to bare soils, with a focus on the main results obtained from the SMOS Aquarius and SMAP missions.

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Commission F - "ropagation Modeling for Aerospace Applications"

Conveners: Carlo Capsoni, Animesh Maitra

High throughput satellite communication systems (HTS) providing multimedia service as well as space science missions can greatly benefit from the use of very high frequency carriers (in the millimetre or even infrared bands), in order to take advantage of the larger bandwidths made available. Aeronautical applications aimed at providing to future travellers continuous global access to high-speed Internet also share the interest in these bands. The drawback of using very short wavelengths is the definite impact of the impairments caused by the troposphere which requires the use of very sophisticated Fade Mitigation Techniques.

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Commission F - "Remote Sensing in Complex and Random Media"

Conveners: Saba Mudaliar, Akira Ishimaru

Remote sensing of land, atmosphere, ionosphere, and oceans need adequate understanding of the propagation and scattering characteristics of complex and random media. Applications abound in geophysical and biological sciences as well. This session addresses theoretical, experimental, and simulation studies on wave phenomenology in complex and random media employed in these applications. Both forward and inverse problems are within the scope of this session. Modelling aspects, validation, and imaging techniques are subtopics of special interest. We welcome both fundamental theoretical papers and papers for practical applications.

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Commission F - "Open Session"

Conveners: Simonetta Paloscia, V. Chandrasekar

This session will accept any papers falling within the terms of reference of Commission F and not covered elsewhere

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Commissions FB - "EM Modeling and Applications of Underground Imaging"

Conveners: Lorenzo Capineri, Motoyuki Sato

Underground imaging based on ground penetrating radar is a widespread method for the investigation of soil characteristics and for the detection and characterization of buried objects. The scanning method based on a single or multiple (array) antennae has an important role in the final quality of the images as the coupling of antenna element with the soil can be variable from point to point due to the different geometrical characteristics of the surface. The EM modeling of the antenna coupling and solutions for the mitigation of detrimental effect on the image reconstruction are topics of interest for the session.

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Commissions FB - "Electromagnetic Problems Involving Volume Scattering"

Conveners: Cuong Nguyen, Ari Sihvola

Volume scattering processes form the basis for understanding and interpreting electromagnetic measurements appropriate to integrated effects from numerous scatterers, such as rainfall, snowfall and the volume of snow on the ground. This session will enable a forum for exchange of ideas related to fundamental research problems in volume scattering including, dielectric constant in mixtures, interpretation of multiple-polarization volume scattering signatures of ice/snow, hail/rain, soil/water mixtures, inversion problems in volume scattering.

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Commissions FC - "Multi-Parameter Radars and Wave Propagation for Remote Sensing and Disaster Management"

Conveners: Tullio Tanzi, Madhu Chandra, Eric Mokole

Radio Science, including wave propagation, plays a central role in shaping the evolution of radar remote sensing in the context of disaster management. In the field of multi-parameter radars methods we are witnessing advances in polarimetry, application of smart and reconfigurable digital beam forming antennas, ever increasing bandwidths, and the application of waveform diversity. In terms of systems, we are seeing the rapid development of compact radar systems that can be mounted on autonomous drones and UAVs. In particular, drone mounted ground-penetrating radar systems capable of detecting victims buried in debris are sought. The requirements of humanitarian surveillance and disaster management applications are posing new challenges on the detection of objects and features mingled within diverse clutter signals e.g. forests, debris and buildings. This session welcomes contributions in this interdisciplinary and trans-disciplinary session on multi-parameter radar and disaster management.

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Commissions FK - "Radio Wave Propagation Aspects in Body Area Networks"

Conveners: Slawomir Ambroziak, Luis M. Correia

Wireless Body Area Networks (WBANs) are playing an increasingly important role in the next generation of wireless systems, as they will allow for the integration of the various handheld and wearable devices with the surrounding environment and infrastructure. Thus, an important challenge is to increase the connection reliability of the in-, on- and off-body links. In order to boost the overall system performance, a good and deep understanding of the radio channel in WBANs is required. This has to be made possible by studying propagation channels via measurements, simulations and developing models considering various scenarios (e.g., antenna type and placement, body type, movements, and environments). This session will give the possibility to exchange views on various methodologies of channel modelling, including simulation and measurements, and to discuss approaches to integrate results in order to build flexible channel models for WBANs.

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Commissions EFGH - "Natural Electromagnetic Noise and Radio Sensing Applications in Terrestrial and Planetary Environments"

Conveners: Y. Hobara, C. Price, T. Ushio, M. Fullerkrug

This joint session aims at presenting recent works on electromagnetic noise and phenomena in the terrestrial atmosphere and upper atmosphere (ionosphere/magnetosphere). Different kinds of electromagnetic noises will be dealt with, including atmospheric noises originated in lightning discharges (ELF Schumann resonances, mesospheric optical emissions etc.), man-made noise and noise due to wave-particle and wave-wave interactions. Corresponding electromagnetic noise environments on other planets are welcome. We are particularly interested in applications of natural EM observations in remote sensing such as monitoring, detecting and forecasting natural hazards, such as thunderstorms, severe weather, space weather and seismic events.

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Commissions EFGHJ - "One-Day Workshop on RFI Mitigation and Characterization"

Conveners: F. Gronwald, R. Bradley, T. Bullet, H. Rothkaehl, D. Le Vine, A. Maitra, M. Haredim, J. Gavan, V. Deniau, P. de Matthaeis

It is the aim of this workshop to bring together researchers, engineers and users from all radio science disciplines to consider how RFI affects their respective fields, to develop mitigation strategies, and to foster cooperation and collaboration. Particular attention will be given to the impact of new and future sources of RFI, spectrum management challenges, and new technology developments. Recent progress towards the ultimate goal of being able to do observations with real-time mitigation of the undesired signals, while leaving the desired signals minimally affected, will be discussed.

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Commissions GF - "Radio Studies on Polar Aeronomy"

Conveners: Giorgiana De Franceschi, V. Chandrasekar, Luca Baldini

At high and low latitudes, the ionosphere can be particularly perturbed and this can be exacerbated around solar activity maxima (but not only). Ionosphere can in turn significantly affect L band (and lower frequency) remote sensing radar systems for Earth science dedicated to observations of surface deformation, cryosphere dynamics, etc. To pose a solid bridge between the ionosphere and remote sensing communities, this session solicits contributions to facilitate exchange of information on their respective states of the art as well as on their future needs. Contributions are welcome on ionosphere and lower troposphere research at high latitudes from GNSS and satellites in situ data dealing with ionospheric irregularities, scintillation, total electron content (TEC) gradients, as well as water vapor measurements. Papers dealing with the assessment and mitigation of "atmosphere" impacts on different applications such as positioning, space weather and remote sensing are highly encouraged. Papers focusing on data processing to support models development are also welcome, as are those based on a multi- instrument approach. Finally, contributions highlighting differences and similarities at high and low latitudes are also appreciated.

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Commissions JEFGH - "Characterization and Mitigation of Radio Frequency Interference"

Conveners: Frank Gronwald, V. Deniau, Richard Bradley, Terry Bullet, Hanna Rothkaehl, David LeVine, Amit Kumar Mishra, M. Haredim, J. Gavan

In this session, radio frequency interference (RFI) issues will be discussed that are of particular importance for observational sciences such as radio astronomy, microwave remote sensing of the Earth, and solar and ionospheric studies where highly sensitive measurements are necessary.

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Commissions KBF - "Electromagnetic Inversion for Biomedical, Geophysical, Non-destructive Testing, and Antenna Characterization Applications"

Conveners: Aria Abubakar, Puyan Mojabi,

Electromagnetic inversion is the process by which some properties of an investigation domain are inferred from external electromagnetic observations. Several application areas, which span a wide range of frequencies from a few hertz to optical frequencies, utilize electromagnetic inversion algorithms and techniques to reconstruct the properties of interest, such as complex permittivity profiles of biological tissues, conductivity profiles in geophysical surveys, or equivalent current distributions of antennas. This special session is focused on bringing together recent advances in quantitative electromagnetic inverse scattering and inverse source algorithms/techniques in these application areas to enhance the achievable reconstruction accuracy, resolution, or efficiency of the computational process. The enhancement can be obtained by methods such as properly incorporating prior information into the inversion algorithm, appropriate numerical modelling and calibration, and new advances in inversion algorithms.