The TanDEM-X Mission: Earth Observation in 3D

TitleThe TanDEM-X Mission: Earth Observation in 3D
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsBräutigam, Benjamin, Manfred Zink, Irena Hajnsek, and Gerhard Krieger
Refereed DesignationRefereed
Conference NameGeomorphometry 2013
Date Published2013
Conference LocationNanjing, China

TanDEM-X is an innovative radar mission which encompasses two formation flying satellites. Its primary goal is the generation of a global Digital Elevation Model (DEM) of unprecedented accuracy. The baseline between the satellites can be flexibly adjusted for single-pass SAR interferometry. The DEMs are produced by cross-track interferometry. Their high performance will be achieved by combining at least two global coverages into a homogenous mosaic of a global DEM. The final DEM consists of geo cells with 1° by 1° size. Delivery of DEM products to registered scientific and commercial users will commence in 2014. Furthermore, the secondary mission goals of TanDEM-X exploit the versatility of the two SAR instruments. Along-track SAR interferometry as well as bistatic and multi-channel SAR techniques are possible, providing unique capabilities for scientific researches in the field of remote sensing. This paper gives a status summary of the TanDEM-X mission with respect to the DEM generation and actual performance, its output products, and an outlook on future mission steps.

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