Professional Course

Synthetic Aperture Radar: Foundations

edX, Online
4 weeks
179 USD
Next course start
Start anytime See details
Self-paced Online
4 weeks
179 USD
Next course start
Start anytime See details
Self-paced Online
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Course description

Synthetic Aperture Radar: Foundations

Remote sensing observations from airborne and spaceborne platforms have become an essential tool in earth observation. They provide an immediate and large-area overview of the evolving earth environment, revealing important information on the state of ecosystems, unfolding natural hazards, as well as geodynamic phenomena at volcanoes, earthquakes, and the cryosphere.

This course will introduce you to Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR), a remote sensing technology that can see the ground even during darkness and through rain, clouds, or smoke. As a participant in this course, you will gain an intuitive understanding of the information contained in SAR observations. You will learn about the concepts and applications of interferometric SAR and experience how SAR data acquired at different polarizations can reveal a wealth of information about the earth environment. Each SAR analysis concept will be illustrated with relevant applications. Specific topics include:

  • The mathematical and physical principles of SAR remote sensing
  • How to access and visualize SAR data
  • Interpretation of SAR images at different wavelengths and polarizations
  • Interferometric SAR (InSAR) concepts
  • The principles of Polarimetric SAR (PolSAR)
  • A summary of applications of InSAR and PolSAR in geoscience, hazard mapping, and ecosystem monitoring

Upcoming start dates

1 start date available

Start anytime

  • Self-paced Online
  • Online
  • English

Who should attend?


  • General proficiency in GIS
  • For verified track: Basic knowledge in Python programming
  • ARSET Level-0 Training “Fundamentals of Remote Sensing” or equivalent
  • ARSET Level-1 Training “Introduction to Synthetic Aperture Radar” or equivalent

Training content

  • Course Introduction and Basic Capabilities of SAR
  • Introduction to Synthetic Aperture Radar Remote Sensing
  • Introduction to Interferometric SAR (InSAR)
  • The Concepts and Applications of Polarimetric SAR (PolSAR)

Course delivery details

This course is offered through University of Alaska Fairbanks, a partner institute of EdX.

4-6 hours per week


  • Verified Track -$179
  • Audit Track - Free

Certification / Credits

What you'll learn

Participants in this course will develop the following skills:

  • Intuitive understanding of SAR image and phase information
  • Understanding the role of wavelength and signal polarization on SAR image content
  • Use of interferometric SAR techniques to measure cm-scale surface deformation.
  • Use polarimetric information to analyze ecosystem parameters
  • Select the right sensor wavelength and polarization for your application.

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