Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Younan, Nicolas H.

Committee Member

Woody, Jonathan R.

Committee Member

Aanstoos, James V.

Committee Member

Du, Jenny Q.

Committee Member

Lim, Hyeona

Date of Degree


Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access


Electrical and Computer Engineering

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


James Worth Bagley College of Engineering


Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering


The objectives of this research are to support the development of state-of-the-art methods using remotely sensed data to detect slides or anomalies in an efficient and cost-effective manner based on the use of SAR technology. Slough or slump slides are slope failures along a levee, which leave areas of the levee vulnerable to seepage and failure during high water events. This work investigates the facility of detecting the slough slides on an earthen levee with different types of polarimetric Synthetic Aperture Radar (polSAR) imagery. The source SAR imagery is fully quad-polarimetric L-band data from the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory’s (JPL’s) Uninhabited Aerial Vehicle Synthetic Aperture Radar (UAVSAR). The study area encompasses a portion of the levees of the lower Mississippi river, located in Mississippi, United States. The obtained classification results reveal that the polSAR data unsupervised classification with features extraction produces more appropriate results than the unsupervised classification with no features extraction. Obviously, supervised classification methods provide better classification results compared to the unsupervised methods. The anomaly identification is good with these results and was improved with the use of a majority filter. The classification accuracy is further improved with a morphology filter. The classification accuracy is significantly improved with the use of GLCM features. The classification results obtained for all three cases (magnitude, phase, and complex data), with classification accuracies for the complex data being higher, indicate that the use of synthetic aperture radar in combination with remote sensing imagery can effectively detect anomalies or slides on an earthen levee. For all the three samples it consistently shows that the accuracies for the complex data are higher when compared to those from the magnitude and phase data alone. The tests comparing complex data features to magnitude and phase data alone, and full complex data, and use of post-processing filter, all had very high accuracy. Hence we included more test samples to validate and distinguish results.



Polarimetry||Classification||UAVSAR||Earthen Levees||Synthetic Aperture Radar