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Remote Sens. 2015, 7(5), 5398-5415; doi:10.3390/rs70505398

Temporal Variability of Uncertainty in Pixel-Wise Soil Moisture: Implications for Satellite Validation

1,2
,
1,2,* and 1,2
1
Key Laboratory of Watershed Geographic Sciences, Nanjing Institute of Geography and Limnology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Nanjing 21008, China
2
State Key Laboratory of Lake Science and Environment, Nanjing Institute of Geography and Limnology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Nanjing 21008, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Xin Li, Yuei-An Liou, Qinhuo Liu, Nicolas Baghdadi and Prasad S. Thenkabail
Received: 29 December 2014 / Accepted: 22 April 2015 / Published: 29 April 2015
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [3326 KB, uploaded 29 April 2015]   |  

Abstract

In-situ soil moisture was widely used to validate and calibrate the satellite-retrieved data of different footprints. However, it contained unavoidable uncertainty when used as spatial representative. This paper examined the uncertainty in pixel-wise soil moisture designed for satellite validation in the HiWATER project. Two in-situ data sets were used for the examination, which were carefully designed to capture the spatial heterogeneity of soil moisture at different scales. Our results indicated that the pixel-wise uncertainty increased with increasing extent. At a small area, the uncertainty referred to the natural spatial variability of in-situ soil moisture. With respect to a large area, sampling error of spatial soil moisture played an important role, particularly of dry condition. Temporally, the uncertainty was higher during rainfall than that after then. It suggested that in-situ soil moisture could be more spatially representative at a small area after rainfall, valuable for satellite validation. Uncertainty was correlated to soil moisture. It was strongly correlated to spatial mean at a small scale and was to the spatial pattern at a large scale. Results of this study offered some clues to examine the uncertainty of in-situ soil moisture for satellite validation. View Full-Text
Keywords: uncertainty; in-situ soil moisture; sampling error; spatial variability; scale uncertainty; in-situ soil moisture; sampling error; spatial variability; scale
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Feng, H.; Liu, Y.; Wu, G. Temporal Variability of Uncertainty in Pixel-Wise Soil Moisture: Implications for Satellite Validation. Remote Sens. 2015, 7, 5398-5415.

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