The remote sensing plays a crucial role in oil spill countermeasures. In case of wintertime, the problem of remote sensing oil spills beneath ice sheet is particularly challenging since an operational system will need to accommodate different kind of oil in ice configurations over an equally broad range of ice conditions and water depths.

TAS-I, one of the European leading engineering industry for the aerospace, and its research center CO.RI.S.T.A., involved into study and development of radar technologies and instrumentations, are conducting a study in the field of detection of oil below ice by means of microwave systems. In this paper a concept of satellite and airborne microwave systems (Radar Sounder and Synthetic Aperture Radar) devoted to the detection of oil below ice are presented. A suitable performance model has been developed and two different arctic scenarios have been simulated. The analysis has been conducted evaluating the Signal-to-Noise Ratio in presence and absence of oil for the two scenarios. Preliminary values of the instruments main parameters are proposed and the results of the study are described.

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