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Remote Sens. 2015, 7(7), 8631-8654; doi:10.3390/rs70708631

Interpolation Routines Assessment in ALS-Derived Digital Elevation Models for Forestry Applications

1
GEOFOREST Group, Instituto de Investigación en Ciencias Ambientales de Aragón (IUCA), Department of Geography, University of Zaragoza, Zaragoza 50009, Spain
2
Centro Universitario de la Defensa de Zaragoza, Zaragoza 50090, Spain
These authors contributed equally to this work.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Nicolas Baghdadi and Prasad Thenkabail
Received: 30 April 2015 / Revised: 13 June 2015 / Accepted: 1 July 2015 / Published: 9 July 2015
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Abstract

Airborne Laser Scanning (ALS) is capable of estimating a variety of forest parameters using different metrics extracted from the normalized heights of the point cloud using a Digital Elevation Model (DEM). In this study, six interpolation routines were tested over a range of land cover and terrain roughness in order to generate a collection of DEMs with spatial resolution of 1 and 2 m. The accuracy of the DEMs was assessed twice, first using a test sample extracted from the ALS point cloud, second using a set of 55 ground control points collected with a high precision Global Positioning System (GPS). The effects of terrain slope, land cover, ground point density and pulse penetration on the interpolation error were examined stratifying the study area with these variables. In addition, a Classification and Regression Tree (CART) analysis allowed the development of a prediction uncertainty map to identify in which areas DEMs and Airborne Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) derived products may be of low quality. The Triangulated Irregular Network (TIN) to raster interpolation method produced the best result in the validation process with the training data set while the Inverse Distance Weighted (IDW) routine was the best in the validation with GPS (RMSE of 2.68 cm and RMSE of 37.10 cm, respectively). View Full-Text
Keywords: LiDAR; ALS; interpolation; DEM validation; CART analysis; Mediterranean forest LiDAR; ALS; interpolation; DEM validation; CART analysis; Mediterranean forest
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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

Montealegre, A.L.; Lamelas, M.T.; Riva, J. Interpolation Routines Assessment in ALS-Derived Digital Elevation Models for Forestry Applications. Remote Sens. 2015, 7, 8631-8654.

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