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ASA_XCH_AX: ASAR External characterization data
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ASA_CON_AX: ASAR Processor Configuration
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ASA_WS__BP: ASAR Wide Swath Browse Image
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Level 0 Products
ASA_WV__0P: ASAR Wave Mode Level 0
ASA_WS__0P: ASAR Wide Swath Mode Level 0
ASA_MS__0P: ASAR Level 0 Module Stepping Mode
ASA_IM__0P: ASAR Image Mode Level 0
ASA_GM__0P: ASAR Global Monitoring Mode Level 0
ASA_EC__0P: ASAR Level 0 External Characterization
ASA_APV_0P: ASAR Alternating Polarization Level 0 (Cross polar V)
ASA_APH_0P: ASAR Alternating Polarization Level 0 (Cross polar H)
ASA_APC_0P: ASAR Alternating Polarization Level 0 (Copolar)
Level 1 Products
ASA_IMS_1P: ASAR Image Mode Single Look Complex
ASA_IMP_1P: ASAR Image Mode Precision Image
ASA_IMM_1P: ASAR Image Mode Medium Resolution Image
ASA_IMG_1P: ASAR Image Mode Ellipsoid Geocoded Image
ASA_GM1_1P: ASAR Global Monitoring Mode Image
ASA_APS_1P: ASAR Alternating Polarization Mode Single Look Complex
ASA_APP_1P: ASAR Alternating Polarization Mode Precision Image
ASA_APM_1P: ASAR Alternating Polarization Medium Resolution Image product
ASA_WSS_1P: Wide Swath Mode SLC Image
ASA_WVS_1P: ASAR Wave Mode Imagette Cross Spectra
ASA_WSM_1P: ASAR Wide Swath Medium Resolution Image
ASA_APG_1P: ASAR Alternating Polarization Ellipsoid Geocoded Image
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ASA_WVW_2P: ASAR Wave Mode Wave Spectra
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2.3.2 Conventions

2.3.2.1 ENVISAT: General product structure

The following convention has been defined for all ENVISAT products:

ASCII Header Conventions

The Main Product Header (MPH) and Specific Product Header (SPH) of ENVISAT products follow the following conventions:

  • Headers use only ASCII characters.
  • They are fixed size structures (i.e., the SPH may vary across products, but within each product it is a fixed number of bytes long).
  • Each entry in the MPH and SPH will follow a keyword-value<units>-terminator structure.

KEYWORDS: Keywords are limited to the set of ASCII characters which include the capital English alphabet [A...Z], and the numbers [0...9]. The only other characters allowed in a keyword is the underscore (_), and the equal sign (=). A keyword is a single word, or several words connected by underscore characters, followed by an equal sign.

VALUES: All values are expressed in ASCII format and follow immediately after the equal sign in the keyword (i.e., no white space in between keyword and value). Values may be of two classes: numeric values, or string-values. Numeric values are those which would normally be expressed as an integer or floating point value. String values are those values which would normally be expressed in ASCII characters regardless of their location in the product. String values fall into two types: single-character entries, and multi-character entries. Multi-character entries must be placed within double quotes (" ") in the MPH or SPH. The string within these quotes may use any of the allowable ASCII character set. Single value characters do not require quotation marks, but are limited to the characters [A..Z], [a..z] and [0..9].

UNITS: The use of units is required for numeric values unless the value has no units or the unit type is inherently obvious. For numeric values which do not require units and string-values, the value is followed directly by the terminator character and no units entry is included. When units are deemed necessary, they are placed within angled braces (< >) directly following the last character of the value to which the units apply. No white space is left between the value and the first angled brace, nor is any white space left between the first angled brace and the first character of the units expression. Finally, no white space is left between the last character of the units expression and the closing angled brace. Within the braces, the units expression may use any allowable ASCII characters and be of any length.

TERMINATOR: The terminator character is placed directly after the closing angled brace of the units for entries which have units, or directly after the last character in the value for entries which do not have units attached to them. The terminator value for ENVISAT products is the ASCII newline character (character code 10 in See Decimal Value and corresponding ASCII character). The use of this terminator allows the MPH/SPH structure to be displayed in an easily readable format (one entry per line) on most UNIX text editors.

All ASCII string entries are left-justified within the quotation marks. Therefore, if the string is shorter than the number of characters allocated for it, blank-space ASCII characters are placed after the last character in the string, but before the closing quotation mark.

Note that in the data definitions in this document, the notation is used to indicate the inclusion of an ASCII blank-space character (ASCII character 32).

Generalised Product Structure
Figure 2.12 Generalised product structure

2.3.2.2 Main Product Header (MPH)

The MPH has a fixed length. Its format is identical for all ENVISAT products. The major types of information found in the MPH are:
  • product identification (consolidated or unconsolidated, processing stage, reference document describing the product)
  • data acquisition and processing
  • sensing time (start, stop)
  • geolocation (start, stop)
  • orbit information (phase, cycle, orbit number, state vector, state vector origin)
  • auxiliary time tagging information (UTC/SBT, leap indicator, clock step)
  • product confidence data (PCD)
  • product size/structure information
  • check sum

Contents

The Main Product Header (MPH) identifies the product and its main characteristics. The Main Product Header is an ASCII structure containing information needed for all ENVISAT sensors. It is of fixed length and format for all products. The MPH contains the following major types of information:

Product Identification Information

This information includes the file name of the product (which describes most of the essential features of the product, such as instrument, mode, and processing level), the consolidation level of the product, and the document ID number of the documentation describing this product.

Information Regarding Data Acquisition and Processing

This information identifies where the product was acquired, where it was processed, when it was processed, and what hardware/software performed the processing.

Information on Time of Data

Included in these fields are the UTC start and stop time of data sensing.

Information on ENVISAT Orbit and Position

These fields contain orbit positioning data which allow one to determine the exact position of the satellite at the time of sensing.

SBT to UTC Conversion Information

This data allows for precise conversion from Satellite Binary Time (SBT), as stored in Instrument Source Packets (ISPs), to the conventional UTC time system.

Product Confidence Data

(See "Product Confidence Data" above.) 2.3.1.4.

Product Size Information

These fields identify the size of various structures within the product so that they may be accurately interpreted. (See "Processed Product Sizes and Coverage" 2.3.1.6. above.)

Format

All entries are left justified unless otherwise stated (i.e., any spare characters within an entry are included at the end of the entry). If blank characters are included at the end of a multi-character string, the blanks are written before the closing quotation mark, not after. The fields of the MPH are presented below.

Note: the MPH is common to all sensors and products. It is provided as a separate file within the Data Formats 6.6.1. section, for easy reference.

2.3.2.3 Specific Product Header (SPH)

The Specific Product Header (SPH) is defined for each product and provides additional information, applicable to the whole product, related to the processing. Its length is fixed for a given product. It contains one SPH descriptor (an ASCII string describing the product), and at least one data set descriptor (DSD). The SPH will follow an ASCII keyword value format similar to the MPH. It can contain:
  • product descriptor
  • time and geolocation of first and last valid DSR
  • calibration data
  • instrument mode data
  • version number of characterisation files
  • version number of characterisation look-up tables
  • processing algorithms information
  • product confidence data (PCD)
  • annotations
  • data set descriptors (DSDs)

The SPH will follow an ASCII keyword-value<units>-terminator format identical to that of the MPH. The detailed SPH structure and contents are given in the sections where each specific product is described in the handbook.

2.3.2.4 Data Set Descriptors (DSD)

The Data Set Descriptors (DSD) are used to describe an attached Data Set or to provide references to external files relevant to the current product (e.g., auxiliary data used in processing but not included with the product). There must be one DSD per Data Set or per reference to an external file. The DS may be a Measurement Data Set (MDS), an Annotation Data Set (ADS) or a Global Annotation Data Set (GADS).

Contents

All DSDs have the same format. The DSD is contained within the SPH as shown in Figure2.12 "Generalised product structure" above. As such, the DSD is also in ASCII format. The DSD contains information specific to a given Data Set within the product. The general contents of a DSD are shown in Table 2.6 below "General DSD format."

Format

The structure of the DSDs will be the same for all products and all instruments. The ASCII format conventions are the same as those used for the MPH and SPH. This structure is referred to as "dsd" throughout this handbook. The general format is shown in Table 1 below:

Table 2.6 General DSD format

Field #

Description

Units

Byte length

Data Type

1

DS_NAME=
keyword

8

8*uc
quotation mark (") -

1

uc
Data Set Name

Name describing the data set. Characters not used are blanked.

-

28

28*uc
quotation mark (") -

1

uc
newline character

terminator

1

uc

2

DS_TYPE=
note: the "DSD Type" flag has been combined with the "DSD Attachment" flag by allowing more possible letters.
keyword

8

8*uc
DS Type = M if a Measurement DS is attached. = A if an Annotation DS is attached = G if a Global ADS is attached = R if no DS is attached (reference DSD only) -

1

uc
newline character

terminator

1

uc

3

FILENAME=
keyword

9

9*uc
quotation mark (") -

1

uc
External Product Reference

If the DS Attachment flag was set to R this field contains the name of the referenced product using the standard naming convention of the MPH. If the DS Attachment Flag was set to A, M, or G, this field may contain the name of the file from which the Data Set was copied, or it may be blank (set to ASCII blank space characters). For a product which was supposed to contain a data set or reference to one, but the file was unavailable, the first 7 characters of this field may be set to MISSING and the rest blanked. If space for a DSD has been set aside in the SPH, but the DSD is not used in the current product, this field may be set to NOT USED.

-

62

62*uc
quotation mark (") -

1

uc
newline character

terminator

1

uc

4

DS_OFFSET=
keyword

10

10*uc
DS Offset in bytes

Gives the position of the first byte of the corresponding DS with respect to the whole product. Set to 0 if no DS is attached.

bytes

21

Ad
<bytes>

units

7

7*uc

newline character

terminator

1

uc

5

DS_SIZE=
keyword

8

8*uc
Total Size of DS in bytes

Length in bytes of the Data Set. Set to zero if no DS is attached.

Bytes

21

Ad
<bytes>

units

7

7*uc

newline character

terminator

1

uc

6

NUM_DSR=
keyword

8

8*uc
Number of DSRs within the DS

Number of Data Set Records within the DS, set to zero if no DS is attached.

-

11

Al
newline character

terminator

1

uc

7

DSR_SIZE=
keyword

9

9*uc
Length of the DSRs in bytes Length of each DSR if DSR length is constant within the Data Set. 0 = no DSRs attached (i.e. no DS attached) -1 = DSR length is variable. Bytes

11

Al
<bytes>

units

7

7*uc

newline character

terminator

1

uc

8

Spare (blanks)
ASCII

32

32*uc
newline character

terminator

1

uc

TOTAL
280
Example Data Set Descriptors

All DSDs must be the same size. In order to clarify the use of DSDs within the product structure, the 5 possible DSD contents are shown explicitly below. All DSDs should fall into one of the following categories. Note that the symbol is used to denote the ASCII blank space character (ASCII character 32). Values given in the following examples are for illustrative purposes only and may not correspond to the true values.

DSD Pointing to a Data Set

If the DSD points to a Data Set actually contained within the current product, the contents of the DSD will follow the example given below. The example given below assumes that the ASAR SR/GR ADS is being described, however the same format would be used for any other ADS, MDS or GADS.

DS_NAME="SR/GRADS"

DS_TYPE=A

FILENAME=""

DS_OFFSET=+00000000000000012345<bytes>

DS_SIZE=+00000000000000006788<bytes>

NUM_DSR=+0000000002

DSR_SIZE=+0000003394<bytes>

DSD Referencing a File

If the DSD is referencing a file external to the current product, the contents of the DSD will follow the example given below. The example below assumes that the ASAR Processor Configuration file is being referenced; however, the same format would be used with any other file.

DS_NAME="ASARProcessorConfig.File"

DS_TYPE=R

FILENAME="ASA_CON_AXVPDK19990324_150411_19990325_123000_20001231_101413"

DS_OFFSET=+00000000000000000000<bytes>

DS_SIZE=+0000000000000000000<bytes>

NUM_DSR=+0000000000

DSR_SIZE=+0000000000<bytes>

DSD Not Used

In some cases, space may be allocated to a DSD in an SPH, but the DSD is not used during normal processing of the current product either due to the nature of the product or due to operator-selected options during product processing. For example, room may be allocated for an ADS, but the ADS is not included normally in the current product. In such cases, the DS_NAME and DS_TYPE fields are filled as they normally would be, but the FILENAME entry is set to NOT USED as shown in the example below. The remaining fields are set to values of zero.

The example below is for the ASAR SR/GR ADS and assumes that we are describing an ASAR Single-Look Complex product. This ADS is not included in the ASAR SLC products; however, space for it is included in the ASAR Image Products SPH. Therefore, this is a good example of a DSD which is not used for a certain product. In this case, the DSD would have the following format:

DS_NAME="SR/GRADS"

DS_TYPE=A

FILENAME="NOTUSED"

DS_OFFSET=+00000000000000000000<bytes>

DS_SIZE=+00000000000000000000<bytes>

NUM_DSR=+0000000000

DSR_SIZE=+0000000000<bytes>

Spare DSD

A spare DSD is simply 279 blank space characters () followed by a newline character. This structure is referred to as "dsd_sp" throughout this handbook.

DSD for a Missing Data Set or File

If a Data Set was supposed to be included in the product or an external file was supposed to be referenced, but for some reason was not, the DSD indicates this by setting the FILENAME field to MISSING. Note that this is different from the NOT USED DSD. The MISSING DSD indicates that something unexpected has happened, and a reference or Data Set that was supposed to be included has not been. In contrast, the NOT USED DSD indicates that a file or Data Set is simply not used for this product - nothing unexpected has happened.

Note that for most products, if an auxiliary file could not be read or a Data Set produced, then the entire product will not be produced. Thus the MISSING DSD will only be used in special situations which warrant its use.

The example below assumes the ASAR Chirp parameter ADS was supposed to be in the product, but was not produced for some reason. The following DSD would thus be produced:

DS_NAME="CHIRPPARAMSADS"

DS_TYPE=A

FILENAME="MISSING"

DS_OFFSET=+00000000000000000000<bytes>

DS_SIZE=+00000000000000000000<bytes>

NUM_DSR=+0000000000

DSR_SIZE=+0000000000<bytes>

2.3.2.5 Data Set (DS)

Contents

The data set (DS) contains the instrument's scientific measurements and it is the actual data of interest. The DS is composed of data set records (DSR). There are as many DSRs as necessary to complete a DS within a product and that number will depend on the product type. In addition, the size of Data Sets within a product may vary. There are two types of data sets: measurement data sets (MDS) containing instrument data, known as MDSRs, and annotation data sets (ADS) containing auxiliary data, known as ADSRs. In addition, ADSs may exist in two forms. The basic ADS contains time-stamped ADSRs, which can be used to relate the information to the correspondingly time-stamped MDSRs. Global Annotation Data Sets (GADS), however, contain information which pertains to the full product and thus each GADSR may not be time-stamped.

Format

The Data Set is in a mixed-binary format. This may consist of integers, floats, characters (1-byte numbers), or ASCII values and ASCII strings. Note that for ASCII multi-character strings in the Data Sets, quotation marks are not used to enclose the string.

A Data Set is composed of Data Set Records (DSRs), as shown in Figure2.12 "Generalised Product Structure." For Level 1B and Level 2 products, the structure includes:

  • The start time of the DSR in MJD 2000 (MJD) format.
  • The DSR length (optional: include if DSR size is variable within the Data Set).
  • Quality Flag: for MDSRs, a signed character is used to indicate the MDSR quality. A value of -1 indicates the MDSR is a blank MDSR (used for Level 1B and Level 2 only).
  • Attachment Flag: for ADSRs, a signed character flag may be included to indicate if corresponding MDSRs exist for the ADSR (1 = error, no corresponding MDSRs, 0 = no error). This flag is used to identify large gaps in the sequence of MDSRs. (To simplify processing, this flag is only used for geolocation ADSs (LADSs), and Summary Quality ADSs (SQADSs). In all other cases, it is always set to zero.) In LADSs, this flag identifies empty granules. An example is provided in Figure2.13 "Example of Attachment Flag Usage". If an ADS corresponds to more than 1 MDS, the attachment flag is evaluated for each MDS in turn, then combined into 1 flag via a logical OR operation.
  • For GADS, no time stamp or flag is required.
  • The data itself.

For Level 0 data, the MDSRs contain Annotated Instrument Source Packets (AISPs) preceded by a time stamp (sensing time) in MJD 2000 format.

Figure 2.13 Example of attachment flag usage

Example of Attachment Flag Usage

For the format of the Level 0 SPH and MDSR refer to the "Data Format(Chapter 6. )" section.