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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Geosciences : Postgraduate Courses (School of GeoSciences)

Postgraduate Course: Active Remote Sensing: Radar and Lidar (PGGE11235)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Geosciences CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course is intended to provide an introduction to the techniques used in active remote sensing, namely radar and LiDAR. The course covers the underlying principles of the measurement techniques in both systems, as well as the interaction of microwaves with natural surfaces. The course focuses on the role of active systems and their application to monitoring aspects of the Earth¿s surface, with particular examples in mapping of forests. Passing the Fundamentals for Remote Sensing course is usually a pre-requisite because we will not revisit basic concept in remote sensing ¿ this is an advanced course.

Course description The course aims are:
¿ To provide an overview of how active remote sensing systems operate, and how they are different to passive systems.
¿ To examine the range of ways in which active systems are used across various applications.
¿ To consider issues of data quality, accuracy, validation and reliability, when assessing the value of actively remotely sensed data.
¿ To familiarise you with some of the key elements of data handling.
¿ To get you to imagine new ideas for future methods of active remote sensing.
¿ To introduce you to some of the many practical, legal, political and economic factors that impact on the success, or otherwise, of aerial and spaceborne active sensors, and their data.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: Principles and Practice of Remote Sensing (PGGE11233)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  22
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 20, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 10, Supervised Practical/Workshop/Studio Hours 4, Summative Assessment Hours 100, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 62 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Multiple Choice Class test (30%) - week 10
Individual Coursework (40%) - 23rd of March at 12pm
Team Coursework (30%) - 2nd of March at 12pm
Individual course work (40%): You will be given an active remote sensing instrument to study in detail (you will get to choose from a list that will include airborne and satellite borne instruments). You will summarise this instrument, its properties, its limitations and some examples of how it has been used. You will be given a pro-forma outline document to get you started, and a set of grading criteria. It will be 2,000 words. You will submit this by noon, Thursday Week 9. You will present a short summary update, and a 1/2-page outline, in week 7 so that you can get formative feedback in time for the final submission.

Team coursework (30%): Make a case to justify Satellite Mission A over Satellite Mission B (A and B will be assigned to each team). In week 5 you will present a summary of your argument and receive formative feedback. Thursday noon, week 6, you will submit a 2,000-2,500 word summary of your comparison and justification (final word count dependent upon the number of team members). Grading criteria will be provided.

MCQ test (30%): Will be compiled of 15 questions covering all aspects of the course. It will take place in week 10.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. ¿ Understand the key principles of active remote sensing systems within the context of altimetry, scatterometry and imaging radar.
  2. Comprehend some of the more complex topics such as polarimetry and interferometry
  3. Process and handle differnt forms of LiDAR data (waveform, discrete)
  4. Place the value of active remote sensing systems into the wider context of Earth observation and remote sensing
  5. Handle different forms of active data and interpret the information contained within such data
Reading List
Compulsory reading:

I.H. Woodhouse, ¿Introduction to Microwave Remote Sensing¿. (Taylor and Francis, CRC Press, 2005) (Radar chapters only)

I.H. Woodhouse, ¿Thirteen Short Chapters on Remote Sensing¿. (Currently only available as an eBook from Amazon, 2013)

W. Wagner, A. Ullrich, V. Ducic, T. Melzer, N. Studnicka (2006) ¿Gaussian decomposition and calibration of a novel small-footprint full-waveform digitising airborne laser scanner,¿ ISPRS Journal of Photogrammetry & Remote Sensing 60:100¿112.

Clément Mallet , Frédéric Bretar (2009) ¿Full-waveform topographic lidar: State-of-the-art¿,
ISPRS Journal of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing 64, 116t.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills This course will provide the students with a range of highly marketable skills and intriduce them to technologies sought after by employers. These technical skills relate closely to the employment opportunities identified by our Industrial External Examiner, professional bodies and graduate feedback. The students also gain skills in logical thinking, project work, organisation and report-writing.
KeywordsRemote Sensing,Radar,Lidar
Course organiserDr Steven Hancock
Tel: (01316)51 7112
Course secretaryMiss Niamh Bajai
Tel: (0131 6)50 8105
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