Faraday effect, microwave polarimetry, polarization


Yueh proposed a method of using the third Stokes parameter TU to correct brightness temperatures such as Tv and Th for polarization rotation. This paper presents an extended error analysis of the estimation of Tv , Th, and TQ equiv Tv - Th by Yueh's method. In order to carry out the analysis, we first develop a forward model of polarization rotation that accounts for the random nature of thermal radiation, receiver noise, and (to first order) calibration. Analytic formulas are then derived for the bias, standard deviation (STD), and root-mean-square error (RMSE) of estimated TQ, Tv , and Th, as functions of scene and radiometer parameters. These formulas are validated through independent calculation via Monte Carlo simulation. Examination of the formulas reveals that: 1) natural TU from planetary surface radiation, of the magnitude expected on Earth at L-band, has a negligible effect on correction for polarization rotation; 2) RMSE is a function of rotation angle Omega, but the value of Omega that minimizes RMSE is not known prior to instrument fabrication; and 3) if residual calibration errors can be sufficiently reduced via postlaunch calibration, then Yueh's method reduces the error incurred by polarization rotation to negligibility.

Original Publication Citation

Hudson, D., J. R. Piepmeier, and D. G. Long. "Polarization Rotation Correction in Radiometry: An Error Analysis." Geoscience and Remote Sensing, IEEE Transactions on 45.1 (27): 3212-23

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date


Permanent URL






Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology


Electrical and Computer Engineering