Spatial Analysis for Radar Remote Sensing of Tropical Forests is based on the authors’ extensive involvement in Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) mapping projects, targeting the health of an earth ecosystem with great relevance for climate change studies: the tropical forests. The subject is developed from a vantage point provided by analysis in a combined space, scale (frequency), time, wavelength, polarization domain.

The combination of space and scale offers the capability to zoom in and out like a virtual microscope to the resolution in tune with the underlying ecological phenomenon. It also enables statistical measures (correlations) related to the forest spatial distribution in case of backscatter, or to the canopy height variations in case of interferometric observations.

The time dimension brings into play measures of the ecosystem dynamics, such as the flooding extent in the swamp forests, deforestation or degradation events.

Wavelength and polarization agility extend the abovementioned capabilities by radar observations that are in tune with particular characteristics of the forest and terrain layers.

The book’s spotlight is on radar spatial random fields, these being populated by either backscatter observations or elevation data from interferometric SAR. The basic tenet here is that the spatial statistic of the fields measured by the wavelet variance (in stationary or non-stationary situations) carries fingerprints of the forest structure.


  • Uniquely focused on specific techniques that provide multi-resolution spatial and temporal analysis of forest structure characteristics and changes.
  • Examines several large and important international remote sensing projects aimed at documenting entire tropical ecosystems.
  • Provides novel wavelet methods for tropical forest structural measures.

As the first book on this topic, this composite approach appeals to both students learning through important case studies and to researchers finding new ideas for future studies.

section Part I|70 pages

Sarcheology: The Era of the Big Radar Mosaics

chapter 1|11 pages

The Dawn of the SAR Mosaics Era

The ESA–JRC Central Africa Mosaic Project

chapter 2|15 pages

The L-Band Breed

The GRFM Africa Radar Mosaic

chapter 3|17 pages

The GRFM–CAMP Thematic Products

chapter 4|22 pages

Evolution of the Species

The ALOS PALSAR Africa Mosaic

section Part II|244 pages

Measures of SAR Random Fields in the Scale–Space–Time Domain

chapter 6|78 pages

Statistical Measures of SAR Random Spatial Fields

Fingerprints of the Forest Structure

chapter 7|63 pages

Hitting Corners

The Lipschitz Regularity, a Measure of Discontinuities in Radar Images Connected with Forest Spatial Distribution

chapter 8|18 pages

The Beauty Farm

A Wavelet Method for Edge Preserving Piece-wise Smooth Approximations of Radar Images

chapter 9|23 pages

The Cleaning Service

A Multi-temporal InSAR Coherence Magnitude Filter

chapter 10|36 pages

Proxies of Forest Volume Loss and Gain by Differencing InSAR DSMs

Fingerprints of Forest Disturbance