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Sensors 2012, 12(9), 12798-12813;

Tree Height Growth Measurement with Single-Scan Airborne, Static Terrestrial and Mobile Laser Scanning

Finnish Geodetic Institute, Geodeetinrinne 2, 02430 Masala, Finland
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 16 July 2012 / Revised: 23 August 2012 / Accepted: 10 September 2012 / Published: 19 September 2012
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Laser Sensing and Imaging)
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This study explores the feasibility of applying single-scan airborne, static terrestrial and mobile laser scanning for improving the accuracy of tree height growth measurement. Specifically, compared to the traditional works on forest growth inventory with airborne laser scanning, two issues are regarded: “Can the new technique characterize the height growth for each individual tree?” and “Can this technique refine the minimum growth-discernable temporal interval further?” To solve these two puzzles, the sampling principles of the three laser scanning modes were first examined, and their error sources against the task of tree-top capturing were also analyzed. Next, the three-year growths of 58 Nordic maple trees (Crimson King) for test were intermittently surveyed with one type of laser scanning each time and then analyzed by statistics. The evaluations show that the height growth of each individual tree still cannot be reliably characterized even by single-scan terrestrial laser scanning, and statistical analysis is necessary in this scenario. After Gaussian regression, it is found that the minimum temporal interval with distinguishable tree height growths can be refined into one month based on terrestrial laser scanning, far better than the two years deduced in the previous works based on airborne laser scanning. The associated mean growth was detected to be about 0.12 m. Moreover, the parameter of tree height generally under-estimated by airborne and even mobile laser scanning can be relatively revised by means of introducing static terrestrial laser scanning data. Overall, the effectiveness of the proposed technique is primarily validated. View Full-Text
Keywords: tree growth surveying; airborne; static terrestrial; mobile; laser scanning tree growth surveying; airborne; static terrestrial; mobile; laser scanning
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Lin, Y.; Hyyppä, J.; Kukko, A.; Jaakkola, A.; Kaartinen, H. Tree Height Growth Measurement with Single-Scan Airborne, Static Terrestrial and Mobile Laser Scanning. Sensors 2012, 12, 12798-12813.

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