The SHARAD data are not image files. They are indeed columns of binary numbers. To analyze the data you will need to understand the contents of the files. Here are some places to look, if you haven't looked there already.
The primary documentation for the SHARAD data is the Data Product Specification (http://pds-geoscienc...ment/rdrsis.pdf).
Each SHARAD data file is accompanied by a PDS label in a separate file with the same name, extension .LBL. The label has information about the size and format of the records in the file, along with metadata about how and when the data were acquired. The PDS labels refer to another label file that describes the columns in detail: http://pds-geoscienc...2/label/rdr.fmt.
The JPEG images in the browse directory are created here at the Geosciences Node. The PDS labels for the JPEG images include a description of the algorithm used to read the SHARAD data.
And finally, with the permission of the authors, I have posted the IDL scripts that implement this algorithm to create the JPEGs. You may find it useful as a model for reading the data files. See our SHARAD web page, under Tools (http://pds-geoscienc.../mro/sharad.htm).
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