Phase calibration approaches for radar interferometry and imaging configurations: equatorial spread F results
- 1Radio Observatorio de Jicamarca, Instituto Geofísico del Perú, Lima
- 2Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, USA
Abstract. In recent years, more and more radar systems with multiple-receiver antennas are being used to study the atmospheric and ionospheric irregularities with either interferometric and/or imaging configurations. In such systems, one of the major challenges is to know the phase offsets between the different receiver channels. Such phases are intrinsic to the system and are due to different cable lengths, filters, attenuators, amplifiers, antenna impedance, etc. Moreover, such phases change as function of time, on different time scales, depending on the specific installation. In this work, we present three approaches using natural targets (radio stars, meteor-head and meteor trail echoes) that allow either an absolute or relative phase calibration. In addition, we present the results of using an artificial source (radio beacon) for a continuous calibration that complements the previous approaches. These approaches are robust and good alternatives to other approaches, e.g. self-calibration techniques using known data features, or for multiple-receiver configurations constantly changing their receiving elements. In order to show the good performance of the proposed phase calibration techniques, we present new radar imaging results of equatorial spread F (ESF) irregularities. Finally we introduce a new way to represent range-time intensity (RTI) maps color coded with the Doppler information. Such modified map allows the identification and interpretation of geophysical phenomena, previously hidden in conventional RTI maps, e.g. the time and altitude of occurrence of ESF irregularities pinching off from the bottomside and their respective Doppler velocity.