The time series (TS) of the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) has been widely used to trace the temporal and spatial variability of terrestrial vegetation. However, many factors such as atmospheric noise and radiometric correction residuals conceal the actual variation in the land surface, and thus hamper the TS information extraction. To minimize the negative effects of these noise factors, we propose a new method to produce a synthetic gap-free NDVI TS from the original contaminated observation. First, the key temporal points are identified from the NDVI time profiles based on a generally used rule-based strategy, making the TS segmented into several adjacent segments. Then, the observed data points in each segment are fitted with a weighted double-logistic function. The proposed dynamic weight reassignment process effectively emphasizes cloud-free points and deemphasizes cloud-contaminated points. Finally, the proposed method is evaluated on more than 3,000 test points from three selected Sentinel-2 tiles, and is compared with the generally used Savitzky-Golay (S-G) and harmonic analysis of time series (HANTS) methods from qualitative and quantitative aspects. The results indicate that the proposed method has a higher capability of retaining cloud-free data points and identifying outliers than the others, and can generate a gap-free NDVI time profile derived from a medium-resolution satellite sensor.
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