Release of SAR Handbook to empower the monitoring and protection of forests worldwide

SAR Handbook: Comprehensive Methodologies for Forest Monitoring and Biomass Estimation cover page

SERVIR is pleased to announce the release of the Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) Handbook: Comprehensive Methodologies for Forest Monitoring and Biomass Estimation. This Handbook contains a collection of state-of-the-art methods and theoretical background to facilitate the use of  SAR data for forest monitoring and biomass estimation.

The SAR Handbook is a “living” document, freely-available online as an e-Book hosted on the SERVIR Global website. Each chapter is authored by a world-renowned SAR expert, and has gone through extensive reviews and testing by the SERVIR Global network.  The development of this Handbook and associated training  materials are the result of years of work and a strong partnership between SERVIR and SilvaCarbon, a U.S. government program working to enhance capacity around the world in monitoring and managing forests.

Aligning with the SERVIR mission to build capacity in the use of geospatial and Earth observation technologies, this initial Handbook release also includes a set of complementary materials: 1) One-page quick reference guides highlighting key concepts derived from the SAR Handbook, and  2) An animated video geared towards a general audience explaining in straightforward language how SAR can capture information for forest monitoring. Image of the SAR Handbook Cover

The overall goal of the SAR Handbook and associated materials is to provide easily understandable technical materials to remote sensing specialists that may not have expertise on SAR, but are interested in leveraging this technology in the forestry sector. We strive to empower users to implement SAR data in their routine workflows.

The SERVIR global website will host step-by-step tutorials, training modules, and open-source scripts that can be used to develop SAR-derived products for forest monitoring and biomass estimation.

With the wealth of freely and openly available SAR datasets, such as Copernicus Sentinel-1 and ALOS PALSAR, and  upcoming SAR missions with open data policies, such as NISAR and BIOMASS, there is immense need for resources that effectively explain how to use and process these powerful datasets for specific applications.

The Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) Handbook: Comprehensive Methodologies for Forest Monitoring and Biomass Estimation was edited by Africa I. Flores-Anderson, Kelsey E. Herndon, Rajesh B. Thapa, and Emil Cherrington. Chapters were authored by SAR experts Franz Meyer, Josef Kellndorfer, Paul Siqueira, Sassan Saatchi, Marc Simard, and Hans Andersen. SERVIR hub point-of-contacts contributed greatly to the international trainings and material development, especially Rajesh Thapa (ICIMOD/SERVIR-Hindu Kush-Himalaya), Phoebe Oduor (RCMRD/SERVIR-Eastern & Southern Africa), Nguyen Hanh Quyen (ADPC/SERVIR-Mekong), and Bako Mamane (AGRHYMET/SERVIR-West Africa).