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Remote Sens., Volume 5, Issue 5 (May 2013), Pages 2037-2570

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Research

Open AccessArticle Optimizing SIFT for Matching of Short Wave Infrared and Visible Wavelength Images
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2037-2056; doi:10.3390/rs5052037
Received: 13 February 2013 / Revised: 12 April 2013 / Accepted: 15 April 2013 / Published: 24 April 2013
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (3787 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The scale invariant feature transform (SIFT) is a widely used interest operator for supporting tasks such as 3D matching, 3D scene reconstruction, panorama stitching, image registration and motion tracking. Although SIFT is reported to be robust to disparate radiometric and geometric conditions [...] Read more.
The scale invariant feature transform (SIFT) is a widely used interest operator for supporting tasks such as 3D matching, 3D scene reconstruction, panorama stitching, image registration and motion tracking. Although SIFT is reported to be robust to disparate radiometric and geometric conditions in visible light imagery, using the default input parameters does not yield satisfactory results when matching imagery acquired at non-overlapping wavelengths. In this paper, optimization of the SIFT parameters for matching multi-wavelength image sets is documented. In order to integrate hyperspectral panoramic images with reference imagery and 3D data, corresponding points were required between visible light and short wave infrared images, each acquired from a slightly different position and with different resolutions and geometric projections. The default SIFT parameters resulted in too few points being found, requiring the influence of five key parameters on the number of matched points to be explored using statistical techniques. Results are discussed for two geological datasets. Using the SIFT operator with optimized parameters and an additional outlier elimination method, allowed between four and 22 times more homologous points to be found with improved image point distributions, than using the default parameter values recommended in the literature. Full article
Open AccessArticle Estimating Vegetation Beta Diversity from Airborne Imaging Spectroscopy and Unsupervised Clustering
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2057-2071; doi:10.3390/rs5052057
Received: 16 March 2013 / Revised: 20 April 2013 / Accepted: 22 April 2013 / Published: 25 April 2013
Cited by 16 | PDF Full-text (817 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Airborne remote sensing has an important role to play in mapping and monitoring biodiversity over large spatial scales. Techniques for applying this technology to biodiversity mapping have focused on remote species identification of individual crowns; however, this requires collection of a large [...] Read more.
Airborne remote sensing has an important role to play in mapping and monitoring biodiversity over large spatial scales. Techniques for applying this technology to biodiversity mapping have focused on remote species identification of individual crowns; however, this requires collection of a large number of crowns to train a classifier, which may limit the usefulness of this approach in many study regions. Based on the premise that the spectral variation among sites is related to their ecological dissimilarity, we asked whether it is possible to estimate the beta diversity, or turnover in species composition, among sites without the use of training data. We evaluated alternative methods using simulated communities constructed from the spectra of field-identified tree and shrub crowns from an African savanna. A method based on the k-means clustering of crown spectra produced beta diversity estimates (measured as Bray-Curtis dissimilarity) among sites with an average pairwise correlation of ~0.5 with the true beta diversity, compared to an average correlation of ~0.8 obtained by a supervised species classification approach. When applied to savanna landscapes, the unsupervised clustering method produced beta diversity estimates similar to those obtained from supervised classification. The unsupervised method proposed here can be used to estimate the spatial structure of species turnover in a landscape when training data (e.g., tree crowns) are unavailable, providing top-down information for science, conservation and ecosystem management applications. Full article
Open AccessArticle Large-Scale Oceanic Variability Associated with the Madden-Julian Oscillation during the CINDY/DYNAMO Field Campaign from Satellite Observations
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2072-2092; doi:10.3390/rs5052072
Received: 14 February 2013 / Revised: 17 April 2013 / Accepted: 22 April 2013 / Published: 29 April 2013
Cited by 15 | PDF Full-text (1408 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
During the CINDY/DYNAMO field campaign (fall/winter 2011), intensive measurements of the upper ocean, including an array of several surface moorings and ship observations for the area around 75°E–80°E, Equator-10°S, were conducted. In this study, large-scale upper ocean variations surrounding the intensive array [...] Read more.
During the CINDY/DYNAMO field campaign (fall/winter 2011), intensive measurements of the upper ocean, including an array of several surface moorings and ship observations for the area around 75°E–80°E, Equator-10°S, were conducted. In this study, large-scale upper ocean variations surrounding the intensive array during the field campaign are described based on the analysis of satellite-derived data. Surface currents, sea surface height (SSH), sea surface salinity (SSS), surface winds and sea surface temperature (SST) during the CINDY/DYNAMO field campaign derived from satellite observations are analyzed. During the intensive observation period, three active episodes of large-scale convection associated with the Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO) propagated eastward across the tropical Indian Ocean. Surface westerly winds near the equator were particularly strong during the events in late November and late December, exceeding 10 m/s. These westerlies generated strong eastward jets (>1 m/s) on the equator. Significant remote ocean responses to the equatorial westerlies were observed in both Northern and Southern Hemispheres in the central and eastern Indian Oceans. The anomalous SSH associated with strong eastward jets propagated eastward as an equatorial Kelvin wave and generated intense downwelling near the eastern boundary. The anomalous positive SSH then partly propagated westward around 4°S as a reflected equatorial Rossby wave, and it significantly influenced the upper ocean structure in the Seychelles-Chagos thermocline ridge about two months after the last MJO event during the field campaign. For the first time, it is demonstrated that subseasonal SSS variations in the central Indian Ocean can be monitored by Aquarius measurements based on the comparison with in situ observations at three locations. Subseasonal SSS variability in the central Indian Ocean observed by RAMA buoys is explained by large-scale water exchanges between the Arabian Sea and Bay of Bengal through the zonal current variation near the equator. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Observing the Ocean’s Interior from Satellite Remote Sensing)
Open AccessArticle Divergent Arctic-Boreal Vegetation Changes between North America and Eurasia over the Past 30 Years
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2093-2112; doi:10.3390/rs5052093
Received: 1 March 2013 / Revised: 24 April 2013 / Accepted: 24 April 2013 / Published: 2 May 2013
Cited by 23 | PDF Full-text (2833 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Arctic-Boreal region—mainly consisting of tundra, shrub lands, and boreal forests—has been experiencing an amplified warming over the past 30 years. As the main driving force of vegetation growth in the north, temperature exhibits tight coupling with the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI)—a [...] Read more.
Arctic-Boreal region—mainly consisting of tundra, shrub lands, and boreal forests—has been experiencing an amplified warming over the past 30 years. As the main driving force of vegetation growth in the north, temperature exhibits tight coupling with the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI)—a proxy to photosynthetic activity. However, the comparison between North America (NA) and northern Eurasia (EA) shows a weakened spatial dependency of vegetation growth on temperature changes in NA during the past decade. If this relationship holds over time, it suggests a 2/3 decrease in vegetation growth under the same rate of warming in NA, while the vegetation response in EA stays the same. This divergence accompanies a circumpolar widespread greening trend, but 20 times more browning in the Boreal NA compared to EA, and comparative greening and browning trends in the Arctic. These observed spatial patterns of NDVI are consistent with the temperature record, except in the Arctic NA, where vegetation exhibits a similar long-term trend of greening to EA under less warming. This unusual growth pattern in Arctic NA could be due to a lack of precipitation velocity compared to the temperature velocity, when taking velocity as a measure of northward migration of climatic conditions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Monitoring Global Vegetation with AVHRR NDVI3g Data (1981-2011))
Open AccessArticle Trend Change Detection in NDVI Time Series: Effects of Inter-Annual Variability and Methodology
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2113-2144; doi:10.3390/rs5052113
Received: 27 February 2013 / Revised: 17 April 2013 / Accepted: 25 April 2013 / Published: 3 May 2013
Cited by 50 | PDF Full-text (3235 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Changing trends in ecosystem productivity can be quantified using satellite observations of Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI). However, the estimation of trends from NDVI time series differs substantially depending on analyzed satellite dataset, the corresponding spatiotemporal resolution, and the applied statistical method. [...] Read more.
Changing trends in ecosystem productivity can be quantified using satellite observations of Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI). However, the estimation of trends from NDVI time series differs substantially depending on analyzed satellite dataset, the corresponding spatiotemporal resolution, and the applied statistical method. Here we compare the performance of a wide range of trend estimation methods and demonstrate that performance decreases with increasing inter-annual variability in the NDVI time series. Trend slope estimates based on annual aggregated time series or based on a seasonal-trend model show better performances than methods that remove the seasonal cycle of the time series. A breakpoint detection analysis reveals that an overestimation of breakpoints in NDVI trends can result in wrong or even opposite trend estimates. Based on our results, we give practical recommendations for the application of trend methods on long-term NDVI time series. Particularly, we apply and compare different methods on NDVI time series in Alaska, where both greening and browning trends have been previously observed. Here, the multi-method uncertainty of NDVI trends is quantified through the application of the different trend estimation methods. Our results indicate that greening NDVI trends in Alaska are more spatially and temporally prevalent than browning trends. We also show that detected breakpoints in NDVI trends tend to coincide with large fires. Overall, our analyses demonstrate that seasonal trend methods need to be improved against inter-annual variability to quantify changing trends in ecosystem productivity with higher accuracy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Monitoring Global Vegetation with AVHRR NDVI3g Data (1981-2011))
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Open AccessArticle SAR Images Statistical Modeling and Classification Based on the Mixture of Alpha-Stable Distributions
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2145-2163; doi:10.3390/rs5052145
Received: 14 March 2013 / Revised: 23 April 2013 / Accepted: 24 April 2013 / Published: 3 May 2013
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (6240 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This paper proposes the mixture of Alpha-stable (MAS) distributions for modeling statistical property of Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) images in a supervised Markovian classification algorithm. Our work is motivated by the fact that natural scenes consist of various reflectors with different types [...] Read more.
This paper proposes the mixture of Alpha-stable (MAS) distributions for modeling statistical property of Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) images in a supervised Markovian classification algorithm. Our work is motivated by the fact that natural scenes consist of various reflectors with different types that are typically concentrated within a small area, and SAR images generally exhibit sharp peaks, heavy tails, and even multimodal statistical property, especially at high resolution. Unimodal distributions do not fit such statistical property well, and thus a multimodal approach is necessary. Driven by the multimodality and impulsiveness of high resolution SAR images histogram, we utilize the mixture of Alpha-stable distributions to describe such characteristics. A pseudo-simulated annealing (PSA) estimator based on Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) is present to efficiently estimate model parameters of the mixture of Alpha-stable distributions. To validate the proposed PSA estimator, we apply it to simulated data and compare its performance to that of a state-of-the-art estimator. Finally, we exploit the MAS distributions and a Markovian context for SAR images classification. The effectiveness of the proposed classifier is demonstrated by experiments on TerraSAR-X images, which verifies the validity of the MAS distributions for modeling and classification of SAR images. Full article
Open AccessArticle Visualizing and Quantifying Vineyard Canopy LAI Using an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Collected High Density Structure from Motion Point Cloud
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2164-2183; doi:10.3390/rs5052164
Received: 7 March 2013 / Revised: 24 April 2013 / Accepted: 26 April 2013 / Published: 7 May 2013
Cited by 25 | PDF Full-text (3079 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This study explores the use of structure from motion (SfM), a computer vision technique, to model vine canopy structure at a study vineyard in the Texas Hill Country. Using an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) and a digital camera, 201 aerial images (nadir [...] Read more.
This study explores the use of structure from motion (SfM), a computer vision technique, to model vine canopy structure at a study vineyard in the Texas Hill Country. Using an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) and a digital camera, 201 aerial images (nadir and oblique) were collected and used to create a SfM point cloud. All points were classified as ground or non-ground points. Non-ground points, presumably representing vegetation and other above ground objects, were used to create visualizations of the study vineyard blocks. Further, the relationship between non-ground points in close proximity to 67 sample vines and collected leaf area index (LAI) measurements for those same vines was also explored. Points near sampled vines were extracted from which several metrics were calculated and input into a stepwise regression model to attempt to predict LAI. This analysis resulted in a moderate R2 value of 0.567, accounting for 57 percent of the variation of LAISQRT using six predictor variables. These results provide further justification for SfM datasets to provide three-dimensional datasets necessary for vegetation structure visualization and biophysical modeling over areas of smaller extent. Additionally, SfM datasets can provide an increased temporal resolution compared to traditional three-dimensional datasets like those captured by light detection and ranging (lidar). Full article
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Open AccessArticle Forecasting Regional Sugarcane Yield Based on Time Integral and Spatial Aggregation of MODIS NDVI
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2184-2199; doi:10.3390/rs5052184
Received: 15 March 2013 / Revised: 26 April 2013 / Accepted: 26 April 2013 / Published: 10 May 2013
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (1080 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This study explored the suitability of the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MODIS) obtained for six sugar management zones, over nine years (2002–2010), to forecast sugarcane yield on an annual and zonal base. To take into [...] Read more.
This study explored the suitability of the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MODIS) obtained for six sugar management zones, over nine years (2002–2010), to forecast sugarcane yield on an annual and zonal base. To take into account the characteristics of the sugarcane crop management (15-month cycle for a ratoon, accompanied with continuous harvest in Western Kenya), the temporal series of NDVI was normalized through an original weighting method that considered the growth period of the sugarcane crop (wNDVI), and correlated it with historical yield datasets. Results when using wNDVI were consistent with historical yield and significant at P-value = 0.001, while results when using traditional annual NDVI integrated over the calendar year were not significant. This correlation between yield and wNDVI is mainly drawn by the spatial dimension of the data set (R2 = 0.53, when all years are aggregated together), rather than by the temporal dimension of the data set (R2 = 0.1, when all zones are aggregated). A test on 2012 yield estimation with this model realized a RMSE less than 5 t·ha−1. Despite progress in the methodology through the weighted NDVI, and an extensive spatio-temporal analysis, this paper shows the difficulty in forecasting sugarcane yield on an annual base using current satellite low-resolution data. This is particularly true in the context of small scale farmers with fields measuring less than the size of MODIS 250 m pixel, and in the context of a 15-month crop cycle with no seasonal cropping calendar. Future satellite missions should permit monitoring of sugarcane yields using image resolutions that facilitate extraction of crop phenology from a group of individual plots. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Remote Sensing of Agriculture)
Open AccessArticle Exploring the Potential for Automatic Extraction of Vegetation Phenological Metrics from Traffic Webcams
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2200-2218; doi:10.3390/rs5052200
Received: 14 March 2013 / Revised: 2 May 2013 / Accepted: 2 May 2013 / Published: 10 May 2013
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (820 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Phenological metrics are of potential value as direct indicators of climate change. Usually they are obtained via either satellite imaging or ground based manual measurements; both are bespoke and therefore costly and have problems associated with scale and quality. An increase in [...] Read more.
Phenological metrics are of potential value as direct indicators of climate change. Usually they are obtained via either satellite imaging or ground based manual measurements; both are bespoke and therefore costly and have problems associated with scale and quality. An increase in the use of camera networks for monitoring infrastructure offers a means of obtaining images for use in phenological studies, where the only necessary outlay would be for data transfer, storage, processing and display. Here a pilot study is described that uses image data from a traffic monitoring network to demonstrate that it is possible to obtain usable information from the data captured. There are several challenges in using this network of cameras for automatic extraction of phenological metrics, not least, the low quality of the images and frequent camera motion. Although questions remain to be answered concerning the optimal employment of these cameras, this work illustrates that, in principle, image data from camera networks such as these could be used as a means of tracking environmental change in a low cost, highly automated and scalable manner that would require little human involvement. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Combining Spatial Models for Shallow Landslides and Debris-Flows Prediction
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2219-2237; doi:10.3390/rs5052219
Received: 20 March 2013 / Revised: 16 April 2013 / Accepted: 16 April 2013 / Published: 10 May 2013
Cited by 7 | PDF Full-text (2736 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Mass movements in Brazil are common phenomena, especially during strong rainfall events that occur frequently in the summer season. These phenomena cause losses of lives and serious damage to roads, bridges, and properties. Moreover, the illegal occupation by slums on the slopes [...] Read more.
Mass movements in Brazil are common phenomena, especially during strong rainfall events that occur frequently in the summer season. These phenomena cause losses of lives and serious damage to roads, bridges, and properties. Moreover, the illegal occupation by slums on the slopes around the cities intensifies the effect of the mass movement. This study aimed to develop a methodology that combines models of shallow landslides and debris-flows in order to create a map with landslides initiation and debris-flows volume and runout distance. The study area comprised of two catchments in Rio de Janeiro city: Quitite and Papagaio that drained side by side the west flank of the Maciço da Tijuca, with an area of 5 km2. The method included the following steps: (a) location of the susceptible areas to landslides using SHALSTAB model; (b) determination of rheological parameters of debris-flow from the back-analysis technique; and (c) combination of SHALSTAB and FLO-2D models to delineate the areas more susceptible to mass movements. These scenarios were compared with the landslide and debris-flow event of February 1996. Many FLO-2D simulations were exhaustively made to estimate the rheological parameters from the back-analysis technique. Those rheological coefficients of single simulation were back-calculated by adjusting with area and depth of the debris-flow obtained from field data. The initial material volume in the FLO-2D simulations was estimated from SHALSTAB model. The combination of these two mathematical models, SHALSTAB and FLO-2D, was able to predict both landslides and debris-flow events. Such procedures can reduce the casualties and property damage, delineating hazard areas, to estimate hazard intensities for input into risk studies providing information for public policy and planning. Full article
Open AccessArticle Remote Sensing and Geodetic Measurements for Volcanic Slope Monitoring: Surface Variations Measured at Northern Flank of La Fossa Cone (Vulcano Island, Italy)
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2238-2256; doi:10.3390/rs5052238
Received: 28 February 2013 / Revised: 28 March 2013 / Accepted: 3 May 2013 / Published: 13 May 2013
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (1179 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Results of recent monitoring activities on potentially unstable areas of the NW volcano flank of La Fossa cone (Vulcano Island, Italy) are shown here. They are obtained by integration of data by aerial photogrammetry, terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) and GPS taken in [...] Read more.
Results of recent monitoring activities on potentially unstable areas of the NW volcano flank of La Fossa cone (Vulcano Island, Italy) are shown here. They are obtained by integration of data by aerial photogrammetry, terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) and GPS taken in the 1996–2011 time span. A comparison between multi-temporal models built from remote sensing data (photogrammetry and TLS) highlights areas characterized by ~7–10 cm/y positive differences (i.e., elevation increase) in the upper crown of the slope. The GPS measurements confirm these results. Areas characterized by negative differences, related to both mass collapses or small surface lowering, also exist. The higher differences, positive and negative, are always observed in zones affected by higher fumarolic activity. In the 2010–2012 time span, ground motions in the northern part of the crater rim, immediately above the upper part of observed area, are also observed. The results show different trends for both vertical and horizontal displacements of points distributed along the rim, with a magnitude of some centimeters, thus revealing a complex kinematics. A slope stability analysis shows that the safety factors estimated from these data do not indicate evidence of possible imminent failures. Nevertheless, new time series are needed to detect possible changes with the time of the stability conditions, and the monitoring has to go on. Full article
Open AccessArticle Retrieval of Forest Aboveground Biomass and Stem Volume with Airborne Scanning LiDAR
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2257-2274; doi:10.3390/rs5052257
Received: 12 March 2013 / Revised: 7 April 2013 / Accepted: 7 May 2013 / Published: 13 May 2013
Cited by 31 | PDF Full-text (515 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Airborne scanning LiDAR is a promising technique for efficient and accuratebiomass mapping due to its capacity for direct measurement of the three-dimensionalstructure of vegetation. A combination of individual tree detection (ITD) and an area-basedapproach (ABA) introduced in Vastaranta et al. [1] to [...] Read more.
Airborne scanning LiDAR is a promising technique for efficient and accuratebiomass mapping due to its capacity for direct measurement of the three-dimensionalstructure of vegetation. A combination of individual tree detection (ITD) and an area-basedapproach (ABA) introduced in Vastaranta et al. [1] to map forest aboveground biomass(AGB) and stem volume (VOL) was investigated. The main objective of this study was totest the usability and accuracy of LiDAR in biomass mapping. The nearest neighbourmethod was used in the ABA imputations and the accuracy of the biomass estimation wasevaluated in the Finland, where single tree-level biomass models are available. The relativeroot-mean-squared errors (RMSEs) in plot-level AGB and VOL imputation were 24.9%and 26.4% when field measurements were used in training the ABA. When ITDmeasurements were used in training, the respective accuracies ranged between 28.5%–34.9%and 29.2%–34.0%. Overall, the results show that accurate plot-level AGB estimates can beachieved with the ABA. The reduction of bias in ABA estimates in AGB and VOL wasencouraging when visually corrected ITD (ITDvisual) was used in training. We conclude that itis not feasible to use ITDvisual in wall-to-wall forest biomass inventory, but it could provide acost-efficient application for acquiring training data for ABA in forest biomass mapping. Full article
Open AccessArticle Tile-Level Annotation of Satellite Images Using Multi-Level Max-Margin Discriminative Random Field
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2275-2291; doi:10.3390/rs5052275
Received: 1 March 2013 / Revised: 3 May 2013 / Accepted: 7 May 2013 / Published: 13 May 2013
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (7584 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This paper proposes a multi-level max-margin discriminative analysis (M3DA) framework, which takes both coarse and fine semantics into consideration, for the annotation of high-resolution satellite images. In order to generate more discriminative topic-level features, the M3DA uses the [...] Read more.
This paper proposes a multi-level max-margin discriminative analysis (M3DA) framework, which takes both coarse and fine semantics into consideration, for the annotation of high-resolution satellite images. In order to generate more discriminative topic-level features, the M3DA uses the maximum entropy discrimination latent Dirichlet Allocation (MedLDA) model. Moreover, for improving the spatial coherence of visual words neglected by M3DA, conditional random field (CRF) is employed to optimize the soft label field composed of multiple label posteriors. The framework of M3DA enables one to combine word-level features (generated by support vector machines) and topic-level features (generated by MedLDA) via the bag-of-words representation. The experimental results on high-resolution satellite images have demonstrated that, using the proposed method can not only obtain suitable semantic interpretation, but also improve the annotation performance by taking into account the multi-level semantics and the contextual information. Full article
Open AccessArticle Automated Extraction of Shallow Erosion Areas Based on Multi-Temporal Ortho-Imagery
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2292-2307; doi:10.3390/rs5052292
Received: 30 March 2013 / Revised: 2 May 2013 / Accepted: 2 May 2013 / Published: 13 May 2013
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (1522 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In several areas of the Alps, steep grassland is characterized by shallow erosions. These erosions represent a hazard through the increased availability of unconsolidated material in steep locations, loss of soil and impaired landscape aesthetics. Generally, the erosions concern only small areas [...] Read more.
In several areas of the Alps, steep grassland is characterized by shallow erosions. These erosions represent a hazard through the increased availability of unconsolidated material in steep locations, loss of soil and impaired landscape aesthetics. Generally, the erosions concern only small areas but sometimes occur in large numbers. Remote sensing technologies have emerged as suitable tools to study the spatio-temporal changes of these eroded areas. The detection of such eroded areas is often done by manual digitalization of aerial photographs, which is labour-intensive and includes a certain risk of subjectivity. In this study we present a methodological tool that allows the automatic classification of shallow erosions on the basis of orthophoto series. The approach was carried out within a test site in the inner Schmirn Valley, Austria. The study covers both the detection of erosion areas and a multi-temporal analysis of the geomorphological changes. The presented approach is an appropriate tool for detecting shallow erosions and for analysing them in multi-temporal terms. The multi-temporal analysis revealed one period of higher increases in eroded areas compared to shrinking during the other periods. However, the analysis of the change of all single erosions indicates that in each study period there was both increase and decrease of erosion areas. The differences in the rates of increase between the observation years are most likely due to the irregular occurrence of events that encourage erosion. In contrast, the rates of decrease are almost constant and suggest a continuous rate of recovery. Full article
Open AccessArticle Modeling Stand Height, Volume, and Biomass from Very High Spatial Resolution Satellite Imagery and Samples of Airborne LiDAR
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2308-2326; doi:10.3390/rs5052308
Received: 14 March 2013 / Revised: 27 April 2013 / Accepted: 29 April 2013 / Published: 14 May 2013
Cited by 12 | PDF Full-text (395 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Plot-based sampling with ground measurements or photography is typically used to establish and maintain National Forest Inventories (NFI). The re-measurement phase of the Canadian NFI is an opportunity to develop novel methods for the estimation of forest attributes such as stand height, [...] Read more.
Plot-based sampling with ground measurements or photography is typically used to establish and maintain National Forest Inventories (NFI). The re-measurement phase of the Canadian NFI is an opportunity to develop novel methods for the estimation of forest attributes such as stand height, crown closure, volume, and aboveground biomass (AGB) from satellite, rather than, airborne imagery. Based on panchromatic Very High Spatial Resolution (VHSR) images and Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) data acquired in the Yukon Territory, Canada, we propose an approach for boreal forest stand attribute characterization. Stand and tree objects are delineated, followed by modeling of stand height, volume, and AGB using metrics derived from the stand and tree crown objects. The calibration and validation of the models are based on co-located LiDAR-derived estimates. A k-nearest neighbor approach provided the best accuracy for stand height estimation (R2 = 0.76, RMSE = 1.95 m). Linear regression models were the most efficient for estimating stand volume (R2 = 0.94, RMSE = 9.6 m3/ha) and AGB (R2 = 0.92, RMSE = 22.2 t/ha). This study was implemented for one Canadian ecozone and demonstrated the capacity of a methodology to produce forest inventory attributes with acceptable accuracies offering potential to be applied to other boreal regions. Full article
Open AccessArticle Optical and Thermal Remote Sensing of Turfgrass Quality, Water Stress, and Water Use under Different Soil and Irrigation Treatments
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2327-2347; doi:10.3390/rs5052327
Received: 11 March 2013 / Revised: 9 May 2013 / Accepted: 9 May 2013 / Published: 14 May 2013
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (454 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Optical and thermal remote sensing data were acquired at ground level over several turfgrass species under different soil and irrigation treatments in northern Colorado, USA. Three vegetation indices (VIs), estimated based on surface spectral reflectance, were sensitive to the effect of reduced [...] Read more.
Optical and thermal remote sensing data were acquired at ground level over several turfgrass species under different soil and irrigation treatments in northern Colorado, USA. Three vegetation indices (VIs), estimated based on surface spectral reflectance, were sensitive to the effect of reduced water application on turfgrass quality. The temperature-based Grass Water Stress Index (GWSI) was also estimated by developing non-transpiring and non-water-stressed baselines. The VIs and the GWSI were all consistent in (i) having a non-linear relationship with the water application depth; and, (ii) revealing that the sensitivity of studied species to water availability increased in order from warm season mix to Poa pratensis L. and then Festuca spp.. Implemented soil preparation treatments had no significant effect on turfgrass quality and water stress. The differences between GWSI-based estimates of water use and the results of a complex surface energy balance model (METRIC) were not statistically significant, suggesting that the empirical GWSI method could provide similar results if the baselines are accurately developed under the local conditions of the study area. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Comparison of Satellite-Derived Land Surface Temperature and Air Temperature from Meteorological Stations on the Pan-Arctic Scale
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2348-2367; doi:10.3390/rs5052348
Received: 20 March 2013 / Revised: 7 May 2013 / Accepted: 7 May 2013 / Published: 14 May 2013
Cited by 12 | PDF Full-text (1535 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Satellite-based temperature measurements are an important indicator for global climate change studies over large areas. Records from Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) and (Advanced) Along Track Scanning Radiometer ((A)ATSR) are providing long-term time series information. Assessing [...] Read more.
Satellite-based temperature measurements are an important indicator for global climate change studies over large areas. Records from Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) and (Advanced) Along Track Scanning Radiometer ((A)ATSR) are providing long-term time series information. Assessing the quality of remote sensing-based temperature measurements provides feedback to the climate modeling community and other users by identifying agreements and discrepancies when compared to temperature records from meteorological stations. This paper presents a comparison of state-of-the-art remote sensing-based land surface temperature data with air temperature measurements from meteorological stations on a pan-arctic scale (north of 60° latitude). Within this study, we compared land surface temperature products from (A)ATSR, MODIS and AVHRR with an in situ air temperature (Tair) database provided by the National Climate Data Center (NCDC). Despite analyzing the whole acquisition time period of each land surface temperature product, we focused on the inter-annual variability comparing land surface temperature (LST) and air temperature for the overlapping time period of the remote sensing data (2000–2005). In addition, land cover information was included in the evaluation approach by using GLC2000. MODIS has been identified as having the highest agreement in comparison to air temperature records. The time series of (A)ATSR is highly variable, whereas inconsistencies in land surface temperature data from AVHRR have been found. Full article
Open AccessArticle Quantifying Dynamics in Tropical Peat Swamp Forest Biomass with Multi-Temporal LiDAR Datasets
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2368-2388; doi:10.3390/rs5052368
Received: 25 March 2013 / Revised: 29 April 2013 / Accepted: 7 May 2013 / Published: 14 May 2013
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Abstract
Tropical peat swamp forests in Indonesia store huge amounts of carbon and are responsible for enormous carbon emissions every year due to forest degradation and deforestation. These forest areas are in the focus of REDD+ (reducing emissions from deforestation, forest degradation, and [...] Read more.
Tropical peat swamp forests in Indonesia store huge amounts of carbon and are responsible for enormous carbon emissions every year due to forest degradation and deforestation. These forest areas are in the focus of REDD+ (reducing emissions from deforestation, forest degradation, and the role of conservation, sustainable management of forests and enhancement of forest carbon stocks) projects, which require an accurate monitoring of their carbon stocks or aboveground biomass (AGB). Our study objective was to evaluate multi-temporal LiDAR measurements of a tropical forested peatland area in Central Kalimantan on Borneo. Canopy height and AGB dynamics were quantified with a special focus on unaffected, selective logged and burned forests. More than 11,000 ha were surveyed with airborne LiDAR in 2007 and 2011. In a first step, the comparability of these datasets was examined and canopy height models were created. Novel AGB regression models were developed on the basis of field inventory measurements and LiDAR derived height histograms for 2007 (r2 = 0.77, n = 79) and 2011 (r2 = 0.81, n = 53), taking the different point densities into account. Changes in peat swamp forests were identified by analyzing multispectral imagery. Unaffected forests accumulated on average 20 t/ha AGB with a canopy height increase of 2.3 m over the four year time period. Selective logged forests experienced an average AGB loss of 55 t/ha within 30 m and 42 t/ha within 50 m of detected logging trails, although the mean canopy height increased by 0.5 m and 1.0 m, respectively. Burned forests lost 92% of the initial biomass. These results demonstrate the great potential of repetitive airborne LiDAR surveys to precisely quantify even small scale AGB and canopy height dynamics in remote tropical forests, thereby featuring the needs of REDD+. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remote Sensing of Peatlands)
Open AccessArticle Automatic Extraction and Size Distribution of Landslides in Kurdistan Region, NE Iraq
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2389-2410; doi:10.3390/rs5052389
Received: 25 March 2013 / Revised: 29 April 2013 / Accepted: 7 May 2013 / Published: 15 May 2013
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Abstract
This study aims to assess the localization and size distribution of landslides using automatic remote sensing techniques in (semi-) arid, non-vegetated, mountainous environments. The study area is located in the Kurdistan region (NE Iraq), within the Zagros orogenic belt, which is characterized [...] Read more.
This study aims to assess the localization and size distribution of landslides using automatic remote sensing techniques in (semi-) arid, non-vegetated, mountainous environments. The study area is located in the Kurdistan region (NE Iraq), within the Zagros orogenic belt, which is characterized by the High Folded Zone (HFZ), the Imbricated Zone and the Zagros Suture Zone (ZSZ). The available reference inventory includes 3,190 landslides mapped from sixty QuickBird scenes using manual delineation. The landslide types involve rock falls, translational slides and slumps, which occurred in different lithological units. Two hundred and ninety of these landslides lie within the ZSZ, representing a cumulated surface of 32 km2. The HFZ implicates 2,900 landslides with an overall coverage of about 26 km2. We first analyzed cumulative landslide number-size distributions using the inventory map. We then proposed a very simple and robust algorithm for automatic landslide extraction using specific band ratios selected upon the spectral signatures of bare surfaces as well as posteriori slope and the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) thresholds. The index is based on the contrast between landslides and their background, whereas the landslides have high reflections in the green and red bands. We applied the slope threshold map to remove low slope areas, which have high reflectance in red and green bands. The algorithm was able to detect ~96% of the recent landslides known from the reference inventory on a test site. The cumulative landslide number-size distribution of automatically extracted landslide is very similar to the one based on visual mapping. The automatic extraction is therefore adapted for the quantitative analysis of landslides and thus can contribute to the assessment of hazards in similar regions. Full article
Open AccessArticle Land Use/Land Cover Change Analysis Using Object-Based Classification Approach in Munessa-Shashemene Landscape of the Ethiopian Highlands
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2411-2435; doi:10.3390/rs5052411
Received: 22 March 2013 / Revised: 30 April 2013 / Accepted: 7 May 2013 / Published: 15 May 2013
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Abstract
The objective of this study was to analyze land use/land cover (LULC) changes in the landscape of Munessa-Shashemene area of the Ethiopian highlands over a period of 39 years (1973–2012). Satellite images of Landsat MSS (1973), TM (1986), ETM+ (2000), and RapidEye [...] Read more.
The objective of this study was to analyze land use/land cover (LULC) changes in the landscape of Munessa-Shashemene area of the Ethiopian highlands over a period of 39 years (1973–2012). Satellite images of Landsat MSS (1973), TM (1986), ETM+ (2000), and RapidEye (2012) were used. All images were classified using object-based image classification technique. Accuracy assessments were conducted for each reference year. Change analysis was carried out using post classification comparison in GIS. Nine LULCs were successfully captured with overall accuracies ranging from 85.7% to 93.2% and Kappa statistic of 0.822 to 0.924. The classification result revealed that grasslands (42.3%), natural forests (21%), and woodlands (11.4%) were dominant LULC types in 1973. In 2012, croplands (48.5%) were the major LULC types followed by others. The change result shows that a rapid reduction in woodland cover of 81.8%, 52.3%, and 36.1% occurred between the first (1973–1986), second (1986–2000), and third (2000–2012) study periods, respectively. Similarly, natural forests cover decreased by 26.1% during the first, 21.1% during the second, and 24.4% during the third periods. Grasslands also declined by 11.9, 17.5, and 21.1% during the three periods, respectively. On the contrary, croplands increased in all three periods by 131, 31.5, and 22.7%, respectively. Analysis of the 39-year change matrix revealed that about 60% of the land showed changes in LULC. Changes were also common along the slope gradient and agro-ecological zones with varying proportions. Further study is suggested to investigate detailed drivers and consequences of changes. Full article
Open AccessArticle The Global Land Surface Satellite (GLASS) Remote Sensing Data Processing System and Products
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2436-2450; doi:10.3390/rs5052436
Received: 24 March 2013 / Revised: 23 April 2013 / Accepted: 7 May 2013 / Published: 15 May 2013
Cited by 17 | PDF Full-text (1176 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Using remotely sensed satellite products is the most efficient way to monitor global land, water, and forest resource changes, which are believed to be the main factors for understanding global climate change and its impacts. A reliable remotely sensed product should be [...] Read more.
Using remotely sensed satellite products is the most efficient way to monitor global land, water, and forest resource changes, which are believed to be the main factors for understanding global climate change and its impacts. A reliable remotely sensed product should be retrieved quantitatively through models or statistical methods. However, producing global products requires a complex computing system and massive volumes of multi-sensor and multi-temporal remotely sensed data. This manuscript describes the ground Global LAnd Surface Satellite (GLASS) product generation system that can be used to generate long-sequence time series of global land surface data products based on various remotely sensed data. To ensure stabilization and efficiency in running the system, we used the methods of task management, parallelization, and multi I/O channels. An array of GLASS remote sensing products related to global land surface parameters are currently being produced and distributed by the Center for Global Change Data Processing and Analysis at Beijing Normal University in Beijing, China. These products include Leaf Area Index (LAI), land surface albedo, and broadband emissivity (BBE) from the years 1981 to 2010, downward shortwave radiation (DSR) and photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) from the years 2008 to 2010. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue High Performance Computing in Remote Sensing)
Open AccessArticle Classifying the Baltic Sea Shallow Water Habitats Using Image-Based and Spectral Library Methods
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2451-2474; doi:10.3390/rs5052451
Received: 15 March 2013 / Revised: 30 April 2013 / Accepted: 2 May 2013 / Published: 16 May 2013
Cited by 9 | PDF Full-text (1079 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The structure of benthic macrophyte habitats is known to indicate the quality of coastal water. Thus, a large-scale analysis of the spatial patterns of coastal marine habitats enables us to adequately estimate the status of valuable coastal marine habitats, provide better evidence [...] Read more.
The structure of benthic macrophyte habitats is known to indicate the quality of coastal water. Thus, a large-scale analysis of the spatial patterns of coastal marine habitats enables us to adequately estimate the status of valuable coastal marine habitats, provide better evidence for environmental changes and describe processes that are behind the changes. Knowing the spatial distribution of benthic habitats is also important from the coastal management point of view. A big challenge in remote sensing mapping of benthic habitats is to define appropriate mapping classes that are also meaningful from the ecological point of view. In this study, the benthic habitat classification scheme was defined for the study areas in the relatively turbid north-eastern Baltic Sea coastal environment. Two different classification methods—image-based and the spectral library—method were used for image classification. The image-based classification method can provide benthic habitat maps from coastal areas, but requires extensive field studies. An alternative approach in image classification is to use measured and/or modelled spectral libraries. This method does not require fieldwork at the time of image collection if preliminary information about the potential benthic habitats and their spectral properties, as well as variability in optical water properties exists from earlier studies. A spectral library was generated through radiative transfer model HydroLight computations using measured reflectance spectra from representative benthic substrates and water quality measurements. Our previous results have shown that benthic habitat mapping should be done at high spatial resolution, owing to the small-scale heterogeneity of such habitats in the Estonian coastal waters. In this study, the capability of high spatial resolution hyperspectral airborne a Compact Airborne Spectrographic Imager (CASI) sensor and a high spatial resolution multispectral WorldView-2 satellite sensor were tested for mapping benthic habitats. Initial evaluations of habitat maps indicate that image-based classification provides higher quality benthic maps compared to the spectral library method. Full article
Open AccessArticle Geometric Accuracy Investigations of SEVIRI High Resolution Visible (HRV) Level 1.5 Imagery
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2475-2491; doi:10.3390/rs5052475
Received: 31 March 2013 / Revised: 25 April 2013 / Accepted: 13 May 2013 / Published: 17 May 2013
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (1248 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
GCOS (Global Climate Observing System) is a long-term program for monitoring the climate, detecting the changes, and assessing their impacts. Remote sensing techniques are being increasingly used for climate-related measurements. Imagery of the SEVIRI instrument on board of the European geostationary satellites [...] Read more.
GCOS (Global Climate Observing System) is a long-term program for monitoring the climate, detecting the changes, and assessing their impacts. Remote sensing techniques are being increasingly used for climate-related measurements. Imagery of the SEVIRI instrument on board of the European geostationary satellites Meteosat-8 and Meteosat-9 are often used for the estimation of essential climate variables. In a joint project between the Swiss GCOS Office and ETH Zurich, geometric accuracy and temporal stability of 1-km resolution HRV channel imagery of SEVIRI have been evaluated over Switzerland. A set of tools and algorithms has been developed for the investigations. Statistical analysis and blunder detection have been integrated in the process for robust evaluation. The relative accuracy is evaluated by tracking large numbers of feature points in consecutive HRV images taken at 15-minute intervals. For the absolute accuracy evaluation, lakes in Switzerland and surroundings are used as reference. 20 lakes digitized from Landsat orthophotos are transformed into HRV images and matched via 2D translation terms at sub-pixel level. The algorithms are tested using HRV images taken on 24 days in 2008 (2 days per month). The results show that 2D shifts that are up to 8 pixels are present both in relative and absolute terms. Full article
Open AccessArticle A Global Assessment of Long-Term Greening and Browning Trends in Pasture Lands Using the GIMMS LAI3g Dataset
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2492-2512; doi:10.3390/rs5052492
Received: 25 March 2013 / Revised: 2 May 2013 / Accepted: 7 May 2013 / Published: 17 May 2013
Cited by 9 | PDF Full-text (6434 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Pasture ecosystems may be particularly vulnerable to land degradation due to the high risk of human disturbance (e.g., overgrazing, burning, etc.), especially when compared with natural ecosystems (non-pasture, non-cultivated) where direct human impacts are minimal. Using maximum annual leaf area index (LAImax) [...] Read more.
Pasture ecosystems may be particularly vulnerable to land degradation due to the high risk of human disturbance (e.g., overgrazing, burning, etc.), especially when compared with natural ecosystems (non-pasture, non-cultivated) where direct human impacts are minimal. Using maximum annual leaf area index (LAImax) as a proxy for standing biomass and peak annual aboveground productivity, we analyze greening and browning trends in pasture areas from 1982–2008. Inter-annual variability in pasture productivity is strongly controlled by precipitation (positive correlation) and, to a lesser extent, temperature (negative correlation). Linear temporal trends are significant in 23% of pasture cells, with the vast majority of these areas showing positive LAImax trends. Spatially extensive productivity declines are only found in a few regions, most notably central Asia, southwest North America, and southeast Australia. Statistically removing the influence of precipitation reduces LAImax trends by only 13%, suggesting that precipitation trends are only a minor contributor to long-term greening and browning of pasture lands. No significant global relationship was found between LAImax and pasture intensity, although the magnitude of trends did vary between cells classified as natural versus pasture. In the tropics and Southern Hemisphere, the median rate of greening in pasture cells is significantly higher than for cells dominated by natural vegetation. In the Northern Hemisphere extra-tropics, conversely, greening of natural areas is 2–4 times the magnitude of greening in pasture areas. This analysis presents one of the first global assessments of greening and browning trends in global pasture lands, including a comparison with vegetation trends in regions dominated by natural ecosystems. Our results suggest that degradation of pasture lands is not a globally widespread phenomenon and, consistent with much of the terrestrial biosphere, there have been widespread increases in pasture productivity over the last 30 years. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Monitoring Global Vegetation with AVHRR NDVI3g Data (1981-2011))
Open AccessArticle Frequent Unscheduled Updates of the National Base Map Using the Land-Based Mobile Mapping System
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2513-2533; doi:10.3390/rs5052513
Received: 29 March 2013 / Revised: 10 May 2013 / Accepted: 13 May 2013 / Published: 17 May 2013
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (4488 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This paper focuses on the use of the Land-based Mobile Mapping System (LMMS) for the unscheduled updates of a National Base Map, which has nationwide coverage and was made using aerial photogrammetry. The objectives of this research are to improve the weak [...] Read more.
This paper focuses on the use of the Land-based Mobile Mapping System (LMMS) for the unscheduled updates of a National Base Map, which has nationwide coverage and was made using aerial photogrammetry. The objectives of this research are to improve the weak points of LMMS surveying for its application to the updates of a National Base Map (NBM), which has rigorous accuracy and quality standards. For this, methods were suggested for the (1) improvement of the accuracy of the Global Positioning System/Inertial Navigation System (GPS/INS) in the long-term exposure of environments with poor GPS reception; (2) elimination of mutual deviations between LMMS data obtained in duplicate to meet resolution standards; (3) devising an effective way of mapping objects using LMMS data; and (4) analysis of updatable regions and map layers via LMMS. To verify the suggested methods, experiments and analyses were conducted using two LMMS devices in four target areas for unscheduled updates of the National Base Map. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Mobile Laser Scanning and Mobile Mapping)
Open AccessArticle Evaluating Ecohydrological Impacts of Vegetation Activities on Climatological Perspectives Using MODIS Gross Primary Productivity and Evapotranspiration Products at Korean Regional Flux Network Site
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2534-2553; doi:10.3390/rs5052534
Received: 15 April 2013 / Revised: 26 April 2013 / Accepted: 9 May 2013 / Published: 21 May 2013
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (13439 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Accurate assessments of spatio-temporal variations in gross primary productivity (GPP), evapotranspiration (ET), and water use efficiency (WUE) play a crucial role in the evaluation of carbon and water balance as well as have considerable effects on climate change. In this study, Moderate [...] Read more.
Accurate assessments of spatio-temporal variations in gross primary productivity (GPP), evapotranspiration (ET), and water use efficiency (WUE) play a crucial role in the evaluation of carbon and water balance as well as have considerable effects on climate change. In this study, Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) products were used to quantify the mean annual GPP and ET at Korean regional flux network site. We found that the seasonal mean values of WUE were 2.86 to 2.92 g∙C∙g∙H2O−1 in the dormant season and 1.81 to 1.88 g∙C∙g∙H2O−1 in the growing season during 2007 and 2008. The WUE was relatively stable during the growing season and tended to vary in the dormant season. Remote sensing data obtained by the MODIS satellite were appeared to be effective to improve our understanding of the spatio-temporal variation of ecohydrological parameters which have not yet been investigated in a number of previous articles. Based on the results of this study, we summarize the interactions between carbon and water circulation in terrestrial ecosystems and how their ecological procedures generated by the photosynthesis of vegetation influence in climatological perspectives. Full article
Open AccessArticle Interpretation of Aerial Photographs and Satellite SAR Interferometry for the Inventory of Landslides
Remote Sens. 2013, 5(5), 2554-2570; doi:10.3390/rs5052554
Received: 30 March 2013 / Revised: 1 May 2013 / Accepted: 14 May 2013 / Published: 22 May 2013
Cited by 16 | PDF Full-text (1473 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
An inventory of landslides with an indication of the state of activity is necessary in order to establish hazard maps. We combine interpretation of aerial photographs and information on surface displacement from satellite Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) interferometry for mapping landslides and [...] Read more.
An inventory of landslides with an indication of the state of activity is necessary in order to establish hazard maps. We combine interpretation of aerial photographs and information on surface displacement from satellite Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) interferometry for mapping landslides and intensity classification. Sketch maps of landslides distinguished by typology and depth, including geomorphological features, are compiled by stereoscopic photo-interpretation. Results achieved with differential SAR interferometry (InSAR) and Persistent Scatterer Interferometry (PSI) are used to estimate the state of activity of landslides around villages and in sparsely vegetated areas with numerous exposed rocks. For validation and possible extension of the inventory around vegetated areas, where InSAR and PSI failed to retrieve displacement information, traditional monitoring data such as topographic measurements and GPS are considered. Our results, covering extensive areas, are a valuable contribution towards the analysis of landslide hazards in areas where traditional monitoring techniques are sparse or unavailable. In this contribution we discuss our methodology for a study area around the deep-seated landslide in Osco in southern Switzerland. Full article

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