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Special Issue "Remote Sensing of Arid/Semiarid Lands"

A special issue of Remote Sensing (ISSN 2072-4292). This special issue belongs to the section "Remote Sensing in Geology, Geomorphology and Hydrology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 March 2018

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Dr. Magaly Koch

Center for Remote Sensing, Boston University, 725 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA 02215-1401, USA
Website | E-Mail
Fax: +1-617-353-3200
Interests: applications of remote sensing in geology, geomorphology, and hydrogeology of arid lands; hyperspectral, multispectral and radar remote sensing; land use/cover changes; water resources exploration/assessment in arid/semiarid lands
Guest Editor
Dr. Brian F. Thomas

Dept. Geology and Environmental Science, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh PA 15260, USA
Website | E-Mail
Interests: hydrogeology; Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE); hydrologic modeling; land use/cover changes; statistical hydrology; time series analysis
Guest Editor
Dr. Ahmed Gaber

Geology Dept., Faculty of Science, Port Said University, 23 December Street, Port Said, 42522, Egypt
Website | E-Mail
Interests: Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR); Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR); hydrogeology; natural hazards; land use/cover changes

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

 

Arid and semiarid lands are ecologically fragile environments with limited water resources and vegetation cover. They encompass a range of very unique habitats—whether desert plains, savanna, seasonal wetlands, or arid mountain ranges—adapted to harsh and changing climatic conditions. After prolonged periods of droughts, the sparse vegetation in these regions often show a tremendous resilience capacity when rains return. At the same time they are very susceptible to surface disturbances and water resources changes, and, thus, may serve as excellent indicators of the onset of climate change. Arid/semiarid regions are usually characterized by their remoteness and low population density.  However, as population pressure increases, these regions are undergoing rapid changes with significant impact on their natural resources. Remote sensing offers an important tool to assess, monitor, and manage such resources and their changes.

 

This Special Issue seeks to compile the latest development in the field of remote sensing technology, algorithm development and applications specifically addressing issues affecting arid/semiarid lands. Tools and methods may encompass a range of platforms (satellite, airborne, UAV, ground based), sensors (multispectral, thermal, radar, Lidar) and techniques (time series analysis, data fusion, machine learning, spectroscopy, polarimetric SAR, InSAR). Topics may include the use of remote sensing for assessing groundwater depletion or diversion of surface water for irrigated agriculture, land subsidence due to changes in water fluxes, soil salinization, evapotranspiration, land use changes (e.g., desert reclamation, agriculture expansion, urbanization), crop water productivity/consumption, ecosystem health, mineral resources, soil erosion, and other forms of geohazards.

 

Dr. Magaly Koch
Dr. Brian F. Thomas
Dr. Ahmed Gaber
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Remote Sensing is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Agriculture
  • Water resources
  • Soil erosion/degradation/salinization
  • Arid land geomorphology
  • Drought monitoring
  • Land subsidence
  • Dryland ecosystem change
  • Geohazards (aeolian/fluvial)
  • Subsurface investigation

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle Estimating Daily Reference Evapotranspiration in a Semi-Arid Region Using Remote Sensing Data
Remote Sens. 2017, 9(8), 779; doi:10.3390/rs9080779
Received: 19 May 2017 / Revised: 26 July 2017 / Accepted: 27 July 2017 / Published: 29 July 2017
PDF Full-text (3345 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Estimating daily evapotranspiration is challenging when ground observation data are not available or scarce. Remote sensing can be used to estimate the meteorological data necessary for calculating reference evapotranspiration ETₒ. Here, we assessed the accuracy of daily ETₒ estimates derived from remote
[...] Read more.
Estimating daily evapotranspiration is challenging when ground observation data are not available or scarce. Remote sensing can be used to estimate the meteorological data necessary for calculating reference evapotranspiration ETₒ. Here, we assessed the accuracy of daily ETₒ estimates derived from remote sensing (ETₒ-RS) compared with those derived from four ground-based stations (ETₒ-G) in Kurdistan (Iraq) over the period 2010–2014. Near surface air temperature, relative humidity and cloud cover fraction were derived from the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder/Advanced Microwave Sounding Unit (AIRS/AMSU), and wind speed at 10 m height from MERRA (Modern-Era Retrospective Analysis for Research and Application). Four methods were used to estimate ETₒ: Hargreaves–Samani (HS), Jensen–Haise (JH), McGuinness–Bordne (MB) and the FAO Penman Monteith equation (PM). ETₒ-G (PM) was adopted as the main benchmark. HS underestimated ETₒ by 2%–3% (R2 = 0.86 to 0.90; RMSE = 0.95 to 1.2 mm day−1 at different stations). JH and MB overestimated ETₒ by 8% to 40% (R2= 0.85 to 0.92; RMSE from 1.18 to 2.18 mm day−1). The annual average values of ETₒ estimated using RS data and ground-based data were similar to one another reflecting low bias in daily estimates. They ranged between 1153 and 1893 mm year−1 for ETₒ-G and between 1176 and 1859 mm year−1 for ETₒ-RS for the different stations. Our results suggest that ETₒ-RS (HS) can yield accurate and unbiased ETₒ estimates for semi-arid regions which can be usefully employed in water resources management. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remote Sensing of Arid/Semiarid Lands)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Minimizing the Residual Topography Effect on Interferograms to Improve DInSAR Results: Estimating Land Subsidence in Port-Said City, Egypt
Remote Sens. 2017, 9(7), 752; doi:10.3390/rs9070752
Received: 22 May 2017 / Revised: 15 July 2017 / Accepted: 18 July 2017 / Published: 21 July 2017
PDF Full-text (7776 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The accurate detection of land subsidence rates in urban areas is important to identify damage-prone areas and provide decision-makers with useful information. Meanwhile, no precise measurements of land subsidence have been undertaken within the coastal Port-Said City in Egypt to evaluate its hazard
[...] Read more.
The accurate detection of land subsidence rates in urban areas is important to identify damage-prone areas and provide decision-makers with useful information. Meanwhile, no precise measurements of land subsidence have been undertaken within the coastal Port-Said City in Egypt to evaluate its hazard in relationship to sea-level rise. In order to address this shortcoming, this work introduces and evaluates a methodology that substantially improves small subsidence rate estimations in an urban setting. Eight ALOS/PALSAR-1 scenes were used to estimate the land subsidence rates in Port-Said City, using the Small BAse line Subset (SBAS) DInSAR technique. A stereo pair of ALOS/PRISM was used to generate an accurate DEM to minimize the residual topography effect on the generated interferograms. A total of 347 well distributed ground control points (GCP) were collected in Port-Said City using the leveling instrument to calibrate the generated DEM. Moreover, the eight PALSAR scenes were co-registered using 50 well-distributed GCPs and used to generate 22 interferogram pairs. These PALSAR interferograms were subsequently filtered and used together with the coherence data to calculate the phase unwrapping. The phase-unwrapped interferogram-pairs were then evaluated to discard four interferograms that were affected by phase jumps and phase ramps. Results confirmed that using an accurate DEM (ALOS/PRISM) was essential for accurately detecting small deformations. The vertical displacement rate during the investigated period (2007–2010) was estimated to be −28 mm. The results further indicate that the northern area of Port-Said City has been subjected to higher land subsidence rates compared to the southern area. Such land subsidence rates might induce significant environmental changes with respect to sea-level rise. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remote Sensing of Arid/Semiarid Lands)
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