Research project

Caratterizzazione Dielettrica della Calotta Polare da Perforazione a Dome-C (DOMEC3D) (DTA.AD004.169)

Thematic area

Earth system science and environmental technologies

Project area

Osservazione della Terra (DTA.AD004)

Structure responsible for the research project

Institute of applied physics "Nello Carrara" (IFAC)

Project manager

Phone number: 0555226408


Due to Antarctica's extent, extreme weather conditions and remoteness, satellite remote sensing constitutes a unique tool for studying this region of the Earth. In particular, the availability of new low frequency microware spaceborne sensors that can penetrate hundreds of meters in the ice sheet, pushed forward the investigations in the Antarctic dynamics. However, these studies are limited by the not adequate knowledge of the permittivity of snow and ice in the 500 MHz - 2 GHz frequency range. The permittivity is fundamental to describe the interactions of electromagnetic waves with the ice sheet, their velocity in the snow/ice medium, their reflections among the layers and the maximum depth they can penetrate in the medium. Up to now, all of the activities done to characterize the permittivity of the Antarctic cover were focused on frequencies below 250 MHz, very often up to 50 MHz. So far, the most reliable models for the snow/ice permittivity in the GHz domain can predict quite well the real part (who govern the waves reflections) but very poor the imaginary part that determine the attenuation. Also, the dependence of the permittivity on the medium temperature is not fully und

Start date of activity



a, b, c

Last update: 02/12/2023