Applications development for multifrequency Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) missions

This project focuses on the benefits, constraints and impact of multifrequency SAR applications to Earth Observation. Join us at the Surrey Space Centre in this new adventure!

Start date
1 October 2019
3 years
Application deadline
Funding source
University of Surrey
Funding information

All university fees will be covered for UK/EU citizens with a base stipend of approximately £15,000 per annum.


The design and upcoming launch of new multi-frequency SAR mission concepts, like the NASA-ISRO SAR (NISAR) mission, as well as an unprecedented availability of SAR data in different microwave bands are going to influence the downstream development considerably, especially in the way new Earth Observation (EO) applications can be designed. 

The free-data policy of NISAR in conjunction with that of the Copernicus constellations, as well as the access to the UK S-band NovaSAR-1 data that UK research centers will be granted, make the investigation of multifrequency SAR technologies and techniques very timely. 

During the PhD, the student will have to develop an EO application based primarily on the use of multi-frequency SAR, initially test it by means of simulations (and/or, if accessible, on data from airborne demonstrators like the ISRO ASAR dual L+S band SAR) and finally on real space borne SAR datasets.

The application to select will be investigated in the first year, by a thorough analysis of backscattering models for different targets and conditions, while second and third years will be respectively dedicated to the design, implementation and validation of the algorithms (image processing, feature extraction, change detection according to what the application requires). The use of real data is very much encouraged.

For informal discussions please contact Dr Guida.

Eligibility criteria

Open to UK and EU students only.

First class degree in electronic engineering, physics, maths or related disciplines.

Skills in image processing and coding are also highly beneficial.

IELTS requirements: overall IELTS score of 6.5 with 6.0 in each component.

How to apply

Please apply online via the Space Engineering PhD programme page. 

A later start / finish date can be discussed.

Space Engineering PhD

Application deadline

Contact details

Raffaella Guida
25 BA 01
Telephone: +44 (0)1483 682227

Research group: Surrey Space Centre, Remote Sensing Applications Group

In September 2019, the group will more formally start a new collaboration with NASA-JPL within the area of Disaster Monitoring. This PhD project may benefit from and link to this new collaboration also in consideration of the upcoming NASA-ISRO NISAR mission.


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