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Open AccessArticle

Reflectance Properties of Hemiboreal Mixed Forest Canopies with Focus on Red Edge and Near Infrared Spectral Regions

1
Tartu Observatory, University of Tartu, 61602 Tõravere, Estonia
2
Institute of Forestry and Rural Engineering, Estonian University of Life Sciences, Kreutzwaldi 5, 51014 Tartu, Estonia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Remote Sens. 2019, 11(14), 1717; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs11141717
Received: 18 May 2019 / Revised: 12 July 2019 / Accepted: 18 July 2019 / Published: 20 July 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remote Sensing of Boreal Forests)
This study present the results of airborne top-of-canopy measurements of reflectance spectra in the spectral domain of 350–1050 nm over the hemiboreal mixed forest. We investigated spectral transformations that were originally designed for utilization at very different spectral resolutions. We found that the estimates of red edge inflection point by two methods—the linear four-point interpolation approach (S2REP) and searching the maximum of the first derivative spectrum ( D m a x ) according to the mathematical definition of red edge inflection point—were well related to each other but S2REP produced a continuously shifting location of red edge inflection point while D m a x resulted in a discrete variable with peak jumps between fixed locations around 717 nm and 727 nm for forest canopy (the third maximum at 700 nm appeared only in clearcut areas). We found that, with medium high spectral resolution (bandwidth 10 nm, spectral step 3.3 nm), the in-filling of the O 2 -A Fraunhofer line ( F a r e a ) was very strongly related to single band reflectance factor in NIR spectral region ( ρ = 0.91, p < 0.001) and not related to Photochemical Reflectance Index (PRI). Stemwood volume, basal area and tree height of dominant layer were negatively correlated with reflectance factors at both visible and NIR spectral region due to the increase in roughness of canopy surface and the amount of shade. Forest age was best related to single band reflectance at NIR region ( ρ = −0.48, p < 0.001) and the best predictor for allometric LAI was the single band reflectance at red spectral region ( ρ = −0.52, p < 0.001) outperforming all studied vegetation indices. It suggests that Sentinel-2 MSI bands with higher spatial resolution (10 m pixel size) could be more beneficial than increased spectral resolution for monitoring forest LAI and age. The new index R 751 /R 736 originally developed for leaf chlorophyll content estimation, also performed well at the canopy level and was mainly influenced by the location of red edge inflection point ( ρ = 0.99, p < 0.001) providing similar info in a simpler mathematical form and using a narrow spectral region very close to the O 2 -A Fraunhofer line. View Full-Text
Keywords: fluorescence; vegetation index; airborne measurements; hemiboreal forest; NIR reflectance; red edge fluorescence; vegetation index; airborne measurements; hemiboreal forest; NIR reflectance; red edge
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MDPI and ACS Style

Hallik, L.; Kuusk, A.; Lang, M.; Kuusk, J. Reflectance Properties of Hemiboreal Mixed Forest Canopies with Focus on Red Edge and Near Infrared Spectral Regions. Remote Sens. 2019, 11, 1717.

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