COSAR – TerraSAR-X Complex SAR Data Product

Driver short name


Driver built-in by default

This driver is built-in by default

This driver provides the capability to read TerraSAR-X complex data. While most users will receive products in GeoTIFF format (representing detected radiation reflected from the targets, or geocoded data), ScanSAR products will be distributed in COSAR format.

Essentially, COSAR is an annotated binary matrix, with each sample held in 4 bytes (16 bits real, 16 bits imaginary) stored with the most significant byte first (Big Endian). Within a COSAR container there are one or more “bursts” which represent individual ScanSAR bursts. Note that if a Stripmap or Spotlight product is held in a COSAR container it is stored in a single burst.

Support for ScanSAR data is currently under way, due to the difficulties in fitting the ScanSAR “burst” identifiers into the GDAL model.

Driver capabilities

Supports VirtualIO

This driver supports virtual I/O operations (/vsimem/, etc.)

See Also

  • DLR Document TX-GS-DD-3307 “Level 1b Product Format Specification.”