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Dr. Paul A. Rosen

NISAR Project Scientist

Paul A. Rosen is Project Scientist of the ISRO-NASA Synthetic Radar Mission at Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), USA. Dr. Rosen has been Principal investigator and co-investigator on a number of scientific research and computing tasks over the years. He is presently a JPL Senior Research Scientist.

Dr. Rosen was the Shuttle Radar Topography Missions (SRTM) Project Element Manager for Algorithm Development and Verification from 1996 to 2000, and was the SRTM metrology Tiger Team lead in 2001. From 2002 to 2004, he led a NASA-funded collaboration with the Air Force Research Laboratory, developing dual use L-band radar technology. From 2006 to 2012, Dr. Rosen managed the Radar Science and Engineering Section at JPL, comprising 120 scientists and engineers developing state-of-the-art Earth and planetary radar observing systems. Dr. Rosen is also a visiting faculty member and lecturer at the Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences at the California Institute of Technology, and he has authored or co-authored over 40 journal articles and two book chapters.

Dr. Rosen is a Fellow of the IEEE, past-chair of the Metro Los Angeles Section’s Geoscience and Remote Sensing Society (GRSS) Chapter, and currently serves on the GRSS Administrative Committee.

Abstract of Speech

NASA has joined forces with the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) in developing the NASA-ISRO Synthetic Aperture Radar (NISAR) mission to measure global Earth change in three primary disciplines – ecosystems, solid earth, and cryospheric sciences. The US and Indian science teams share these global science objectives; in addition, India has developed a set of local objectives in agricultural biomass estimation, Himalayan glacier characterization, and coastal ocean measurements in and around India. NISAR will be ready for launch in December 2021.

NISAR has demanding coverage, sampling, and accuracy requirements, requiring a swath of over 240 km at 3-10 m SAR imaging resolution, using full polarimetry where needed. NISAR carries two interoperable radars, one operating at L-band (24 cm wavelength) and the other at S-band (10 cm wavelength). The L-band system is being designed to operate up to 50 minutes per orbit, and the S-band system to around 10 minutes per orbit. The 12-day exact repeat orbit will be controlled to within 300 m for repeat-pass interferometry measurements. This unprecedented coverage in space, time, polarimetry, and frequency, will add a new and rich, free and open, data set to the international constellation of sensors studying Earth surface change.