Seminar by Dr. Scott Hensley

NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

"Mapping Beneath the Vegetation:

The GeoSAR Mapping Instrument"

3:30pm, Wednesday, June 8, 2005

NASA Goddard Visitor Center

Sponsored by the Washington/Northern Virginia Chapter of the

IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Society

Seminar Abstract: GeoSAR is a program to develop a dual frequency airborne radar interferometric mapping instrument designed to meet the mapping needs of a variety of users in government and private industry. Program participants are the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Earthdata International, Inc., and the California Department of Conservation with funding provided initially by DARPA and currently by the National Imagery and Mapping Agency.

Begun to address the critical mapping needs of the California Department of Conservation to map seismic and landslide hazards throughout the state, GeoSAR is currently undergoing tests of the X-band and P-band radars designed to measure the terrain elevation at the top and bottom of the vegetation canopy. Maps created with the GeoSAR data will be used to assess potential geologic and seismic hazards (such as landslides), classify land cover, map farmlands and urbanization, and manage forest harvests.

This talk will present an overview of the system and show some examples of X- and P-band data and maps generated using the GeoSAR systems and comparison with other sensor data such as LIDAR and photogrammetric data.

Dr. Scott Hensley received his B.S. degrees in mathematics and physics from the University of California at Irvine and his Ph.D. in Mathematics from the State University of New York at Stony Brook where he specialized in the study of differential geometry. Subsequent to graduating, Dr. Hensley worked at Hughes Aircraft Company on a variety of radar systems, including the Magellan radar.

In 1992, Dr. Hensley joined the staff of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory where he studies advanced radar techniques for geophysical applications. His research has involved using both stereo and interferometric data acquired by the Magellan spacecraft at Venus. Dr. Hensley has worked with ERS-1, JERS-1 and SIR-C data for differential interferometry studies of earthquakes and volcanoes. Current research also includes studying the amount of penetration into the vegetation canopy using simultaneous L and C band TOPSAR measurements and repeat pass airborne interferometry data collected at lower frequencies.

Dr. Hensley was the GeoSAR Chief Scientist and lead the GeoSAR Processing and Algorithm Development Team for an airborne interferometric radar mapping instrument using X- and P-bands for mapping true ground surface heights beneath the vegetation canopy. He was the technical lead of the SRTM Interferometric Processor Development Team that was a shuttle based interferometric radar used to map the Earth’s topography between 60 latitude.

Dr. Hensley is currently a member of the Cassini radar science team (mapping the surface of Titan, a moon of Saturn) and the Chief Scientist for the UAVSAR an airborne radar being designed and built to map deformation from both natural (earthquakes, volcanoes, and glaciers) and anthropogenic sources (water and oil pumping).