Analytical model of bistatic reflections and radio occultation signals



[1] The relationships between the Doppler frequencies, eikonal acceleration, and refractive attenuations of the direct and reflected signals are established for bistatic and radio occultation experiments. These connections allow recalculating the Doppler shifts and the phase delays to the refractive attenuation (reflectivity cross section) and open a new avenue for potentially measuring the total absorption in the atmosphere at low elevation angles. The fundamental characteristics of bistatic remote sensing of the atmosphere and Earth's surface such as the phase delay, reflection coefficient, reflectivity cross section, and Doppler shift of the reflected signals relative to the direct signals are obtained in analytical forms by taking into account the refraction and absorption effects in the atmosphere. Difference in the Doppler frequencies of the reflected and direct signals is proportional to the difference of the modified refractive index at the radio ray perigee and at the Earth's surface. The obtained analytical results are in good agreement with the measurements data obtained during the MIR/GEO (wavelengths 2 and 32 cm), and CHAMP (wavelengths 19 and 24 cm) radio occultation experiments. Detecting the reflected signals in radio occultation data has opened new perspectives for bistatic monitoring of the atmosphere and Earth's surface at low elevation angles. Experimental results of the propagation effects at low elevation angles are of great importance for fundamental theoretical investigation of radio waves propagation.